Merit Scholarships

2019-2020 Guidelines

Date, Location and Times

  • Sunday, April 28, 2019, 9 am - 4 pm
  • Winnetka Campus - 300 Green Bay Road, Winnetka
  • Auditions will last up to 10 minutes in length.
  • Audition times will be assigned shortly after April15, 2019.



  • Participants must be enrolled in private instruction at the Music Institute of Chicago.
  • Participants must not be older than 19 years old on April 1, 2019.
  • Merit Scholarship auditions are most appropriate for students at a high level of accomplishment. A letter of recommendation is required from your private instructor with your application.



  • Applications must be received by April 15, 2019.
  • Please include a brief biography and a letter of recommendation from your private instructor with your application.


Requirements for Merit Scholarship Recipients

  • Merit Scholarship recipients are required to register for and participate in an MIC ensemble (e.g., chamber music, orchestra, musical theater, early music ensemble, etc.) throughout the school year.  Tuition for one ensemble will be waived as part of the benefits of the merit scholarship.  Merit scholarship recipients who do not complete the full academic year of chamber music will forfeit their scholarship.
  • Merit scholarship recipients who enroll in chamber music are required to fulfill the requirements of the chamber music program.
  • Continuance of the merit scholarship award for second semester is dependent upon review of regular lesson attendance, lesson preparation, fulfillment of ensemble requirements and participation in performance opportunities.
  • Award recipients may be expected to send thank you letters to donors who have made scholarship monies available.
  • Recipients are also expected to perform at donor events and other opportunities that showcase our students in the community.



  • The use of an accompanist is required for all instrumentalists (except pianists, unless playing concerti) and vocalists.
  • Students need to make arrangements with the pianist of their choice; the payment for the pianist will be at the student’s expense. 



  • Merit Scholarships will be awarded solely on the basis of performance level at live auditions to be adjudicated by a panel of professional musicians.
  • Awards will be based on the average of adjudicators’ scores.



  • Students should be prepared to perform two contrasting selections. 
  • Students should bring one original and two copies of their music to the audition.



  • There are two divisions:  a Junior Division for students ages 12 and under and a Senior Division for students ages 13-19.
  • Please determine the appropriate division according to the student’s age on April 1, 2019.



  • Letters will be mailed to inform students of the results of the auditions by May 15, 2019.
  • A list of all students receiving Merit Scholarships will be sent via e-mail to all faculty.  This listing will not include the size of award.



  • Awards will range from $500 to $1500, in $250 increments.
  • Merit-based scholarship awards are independent of need-based financial aid awards. 
  • The number of awards is finite and is based on the projected endowment payout.
  • A limited number of discretionary scholarships may be given to students in the areas of winds, brass, voice, string bass, and percussion.