Munster Trust Study Awards

Brass

Coronavirus update November 2020:  The current intention of the Trustees is to continue to provide support for students in the academic year 2021/22.  In 2020, it was necessary to cancel all live auditions for the Munster Trust Study Awards.  We are keeping all Government advice and restrictions relating to COVID-19 under review and, whilst we have set aside provisional dates for live auditions in London in the spring of 2021, there is a strong chance that these auditions will not be possible.   If that is the case, candidates will be assessed on the basis of their application forms, recordings and references, and so candidates are advised to ensure that their applications and recordings submitted to the Trust are as strong as they can be – have a look here for tips on how to produce an acceptable recording.  Please check back nearer the application opening date (1st January 2021) for further information. 

What can I apply for?

You may apply to the Trust if:

you are a singer or instrumentalist looking to undertake performance-based classical or jazz music postgraduate study; or

composer looking to undertake postgraduate study in composition; or

an exceptional jazz musician looking for funding towards their final year of a performance-based jazz undergraduate course.

Your application may be for postgraduate study:

at up to two different institutions (if you have not yet made a final decision on where you will be studying);

and/or for private study, short courses or masterclasses.

You do not have to have been accepted on your course when you apply to the Trust.  Applications will be accepted from students undertaking their second or subsequent postgraduate year.

You may not apply for:

  • Courses which the Trustees perceive to be for Professional Development
  • Undergraduate/first degree courses unless you are an exceptional jazz musician about to enter your final year of undergraduate study
  • Musical Theatre, Popular Music and Music Therapy courses
  • Film composition courses
  • Conducting and répétiteur courses
  • MPhil and PhD courses: students undertaking such courses are advised to contact the Arts & Humanities Research Council – www.ukri.org/councils/ahrc/

If you have been successful in being offered an award once before in the past, you can apply for further support (the same application procedure applies).  However, the Trustees can only offer a maximum of two awards.

You may also re-apply to the Trust if you have applied in the past but not been offered an award.  However, if you have been turned down without an award twice in the past, you may not apply to the Trust for a third time.  Students who apply to the Trust too early in their training, therefore, risk jeopardising their chances of obtaining funding at a later date.

Eligibility Criteria:

The current policy of the Trust is to consider candidates (instrumentalists, singers & composers) for study awards who satisfy the following residency criteria:

  1. The applicant has either been resident in the UK for over ten years since birth or alternatively has successfully completed (by the end of the current academic year) at least three academic years of full-time study in a UK higher education institution (University / Music Conservatoire); and
  2. the applicant can prove that, based on the laws and regulations in force at the closing date for applications (10 February) and his/her personal circumstances, he/she automatically has permission to continue to reside and work in the UK following completion of higher education.  In view of the transitional nature this year of the UK’s relationship with the European Union, the Trustees would like to clarify that, provided that long-term residents of EEA countries are able to show three academic years of full-time study in a UK higher education institution (see 1. above), they will this year be accepted as eligible to apply. If you are a student from the EEA and are unsure as to whether you are eligible to apply, please contact the Trust Secretary on 01428 685427 or admin@munstertrust.org.uk

Commonwealth Candidates:  Reflecting the Trust’s 60 year record of supporting outstanding candidates from the Commonwealth, an exception will be made to requirements 1 and 2 in the case of applicants who are long-term residents of Commonwealth countries. These candidates’ applications should be for study in the UK only.

Please note: The Trust may ask for proof of eligibility in the form of scans of passports, letters from the Home Office or other official information. Failure to provide such information when requested will result in your application being rejected.

Application Procedure:

2021 -The general rule of the Trust is that, if called to a live audition, you must audition in person in London on the date appropriate to your discipline. However, in response to the restrictions relating to COVID-19, it may be necessary to alter the application and audition procedure in 2021, and we may have to cancel live auditions, in which case candidates will be assessed on the basis of their application forms, recordings and references: candidates are advised to ensure that their applications and recordings submitted to the Trust are as strong as they can be – see further information about recordings below and our tips on how to produce recordings here.

Applications will be available for online submission from 1 January 2021.  A complete application consists of the online application form, two recordings and two references. The closing date for submission of completed application forms, references & recordings is midnight on 10 February 2021.

1. Application form:
  • Have a look at our Application Helpsheet 2021 which contains details of the information required to submit your application form.  It will allow you to assemble all the information you will require before you start to complete the form.
  • Please contact us by email if you require additional help or support through the application process.
  • The Munster Trust is committed to treating all applicants equally and encourages applications from students from all backgrounds.
  • Usually, awards are made to selected applicants after audition and interview.  However, in view of coronavirus restrictions, it may not be possible to hold live auditions, and, if that is the case, candidates will be assessed on the basis of their application forms, recordings and references.  Candidates are advised to ensure that their applications and recordings submitted to the Trust are as strong as they can be, so please provide considered answers to all the questions in the application form.
2. References:
  • Two references must be submitted by 10 February 2021 as part of your application.
  • One reference must be from your current teacher and the other from a person with up-to-date knowledge of your musical training (e.g. your Head of Department).
  • The reference form will be available for online submission from 1 January 2021. 
  • You need to ask your referees to use this link Study Grant Reference form or to go to the Trust homepage and follow the link entitled “Submit References?” from that homepage.
  • References must be submitted before midnight on 10 February 2021. If your references are received after the closing date, your application may be rejected.
  • Please ask your referees to contact the Trust Secretary +44 (0)1428 685427 or admin@munstertrust.org.uk if they encounter any difficulties submitting online.
3. Recordings:

We appreciate that making a recording may be different from usual this year in view of coronavirus restrictions.  We have produced a guide which includes some tips on how to produce a recording that will be acceptable to the Trustees no matter what your circumstances, but some specific points to bear in mind are:

  • The audio quality is more important than the video quality for your recordings but follow our tips on camera position, etc. The recording must be unedited;
  • You should try to submit accompanied pieces performed with an accompaniment but this can be a “minus-one track” if you are unable to record with an accompanist.  Check the balance between your playing and the accompaniment;
  • If you are unable to produce recordings specifically for your Munster Trust application, we will accept recordings made for, for instance, college video auditions, but we do require all recordings to be uploaded to YouTube and YouTube links added to your application.  All recordings should be from within the past 6 months (12 months for composition) and, if you have applied to the Trust in the past, please do not submit a recording/piece that you have used to support a previous application.
  • Please remember that the Trustees will not be assessing the quality of your recording but only the quality of your performance, and appreciate the challenges faced this year.

What recordings to provide: SINGERS AND INSTRUMENTALISTS (except PERCUSSION – see below)

To accompany your application form, please include two YouTube links.  Each link must be to a video recording of you singing/playing within the previous 6 months.  The two pieces that you choose for your links must be contrasting in period, style and tempo, and each piece should be between 4 and 5 minutes long.

Do not submit two movements from the same work, or two pieces by the same composer.

Ideally the recordings should not include long introductions by accompanying instruments and you do not need to introduce yourself or the piece.  There should be approximately five minutes of your performance on each recording.

Jazz candidates: We welcome recordings of you playing as part of a small band, so that the Trustees can judge your interaction with other players.  Where this is not possible, you may use backing tracks to replace the small band.  You should choose two pieces that best illustrate your interest and ability in areas of music that involve improvisation.

Piano Accompanists – Please include links to either:
Two unedited video recordings of you accompanying an instrumentalist. Neither of the two pieces should exceed six minutes; or
Two unedited video recordings of you accompanying a singer. Neither of the two pieces should exceed six minutes; or
Two unedited video recordings of you accompanying, separately, a singer and an instrumentalist. Neither piece should exceed six minutes.
When selecting your pieces and making your recordings, please bear in mind that the Trustees wish to be able to judge both your abilities as a pianist and your skills as an accompanist.

Please contact the Trust Secretary on admin@munstertrust.org.uk or on 01428 685427 well in advance of the application closing date if you need to discuss what it is possible for you to achieve and what the Trustees will be able to accept.

What recordings to provide: PERCUSSION

To accompany your application form, please include two YouTube links to video recordings as follows:

  • One video recording should consist of the following pieces:  Timpani: Hindemith Metamorphoses on Themes of Weber AND Snare Drum: Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherazade (Mvts 3 and 4)
  • The other video recording should consist of the following pieces: Xylophone: Gershwin Porgy and Bess Introduction AND Vibraphone: Bernstein West Side Story.

If, on account of coronavirus restrictions, it is not possible for you to comply with these repertoire requirements, please contact the Trust Secretary on 01428 685427 well in advance of the application closing date to discuss what it is possible for you to achieve and what the Trustees will be able to accept.

What recordings to provide: COMPOSERS

To accompany your application form, please include YouTube OR SoundCloud links to two recordings of recent compositions contrasting in style.  Two separate links are required – one for each piece.  These should have been recorded within the last 12 months, and within the last 6 months if possible.

Do not submit scores unless requested to do so.

Recordings of real performances are preferable but we appreciate that this may not be possible, particularly this year because of coronavirus restrictions.

If you have problems with these recording requirements, please contact the Trust Secretary on Trust Secretary on 01428 685427 well in advance of the application closing date.

Uploading to YouTube/SoundCloud:

  • Please note: all video recordings must be publicly viewable.  Please use either the unlisted or public privacy setting.
  • Ensure that all advertisements are turned off – please refer to the FAQs if necessary.
  • Please add the date on which the recording was made (and not just the date on which it was uploaded) to the Description section of YouTube or SoundCloud as you upload your recording.
Auditions and Awards:

Once you have successfully submitted your application and recordings, and your references have been received by the Trust, you may not hear back from the Trust regarding auditions until early-mid April.

2021 – in response to the restrictions relating to COVID-19 we may have to alter our audition process.  Further information will be available here in due course.

If live auditions do take place, you must be prepared to audition in person in London.

Provisional dates for auditions in 2021 are as follows:

    • Wednesday 21st April 2021 – Keyboard
    • Monday 26th April 2021 – Voice
    • Thursday 6th May 2021 – Brass/Percussion/Woodwind
    • Monday 10th May 2021 – Strings
    • Wednesday 12th May 2021 – Woodwind
    • Wednesday 19th May 2021 – Jazz – am, Voice – pm
    • Monday 24th May 2021 – Strings
    • Wednesday 2nd June 2021 – Composers’ interviews

Awards are made to selected applicants after the completion of the application and audition process..  The Trust Secretary will not enter into correspondence with applicants, except to amplify or clarify their applications, and is not at liberty to give applicants any assessment of their chances of success, nor to discuss reasons for failure. The granting or withholding of financial assistance is entirely at the collective discretion of the Trustees and in no circumstances will reasons be given for rejection or for the selection of one applicant as against another.

Privacy:

Applicants are advised that the information submitted, including personal information, will be used for assessment and evaluation purposes by the Countess of Munster Musical Trust Trustees, staff and appointed independent advisers. The Countess of Munster Musical Trust will use the information that you submit on the application form to help us determine your suitability for an audition, award and other related purposes. For full details of our Privacy Notice, please click here. If you have any queries regarding the personal information we hold about you, please address them to the Trust Secretary.

Munster Trust Study Award Application Form