Performance Grants and Fellowships

Music Performance grants (for music majors) and Music Ensemble scholarships of up to $1,500 (for non-music majors) are awarded on the basis of performance ability and musical promise and are competitive across the applicant pool. Each auditioning student is considered for Music Performance grants, and each non-music major wishing to perform in one of our major ensembles (Houghton Symphony Orchestra, Houghton Wind Ensemble, Men’s & Women’s Choirs, Houghton A Cappella, or Gospel Choir) is eligible for Music Ensemble scholarship consideration. (Ensemble scholarships require a video audition – see section below.)

Bain Vocal Fellowships

Growing from a generous bequest of Wilfred Bain, founder of the Houghton College Choir and pre-eminent American music educator, the Bain Fellowships are awarded annually to the outstanding soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor, and baritone/bass entering first-year student. Recipients are usually music majors, though in cases of exceptional merit an award may be made to a non-major. Fellowship holders will participate in choral and chamber ensembles as well as Houghton Lyric Theater. Consideration for these fellowships is concurrent with entrance auditions to the School of Music. Bain Vocal Fellowships are renewable annually based on maintenance of appropriate criteria.

Music Ensemble Scholarships

Music ensemble scholarship recipients will commit to being enrolled in a major ensemble for a period of one year (fall and spring semesters) and will have performance opportunities with large-ensemble, both on-campus and in the greater Buffalo and Rochester areas.

A video audition is required for consideration for an ensemble scholarship (submitted to Prof. Victoria Pitre as a YouTube link or DropBox link). Audition requirements are as follows:

  • Brass and Wind: An excerpt from a concerto, sonata, or etude (no longer than 10 minutes), plus two scales (one in flats and one in sharps; each scale in two octaves minimum and three octaves where applicable).
  •  Voice: Sing two selections in contrasting styles, demonstrating both a slow, lyric style and a faster, more technical style. If prior voice study has included foreign languages, sing in the foreign language, if possible.
  • Percussion: Prepare an audition demonstrating development levels on each of these three areas: snare drum, mallets (marimba or xylophone), and timpani.

Applicants typically choose to demonstrate their playing level on their primary instrument first by playing a solo chosen from their state solo listings (e.g. NYSSMA manual).

Music Performance Grants

The typical holder of a performance grant will be a talented student (any instrument or voice part) choosing a Bachelor of Music curriculum or, in some cases, possessing solid skills on an instrument of particular need to our major ensembles or programs.