performing arts scholarships

There are thousands of scholarships available for students in the performing arts. However, they aren’t usually pointed out to you. You’ll need to find your scholarships. Once you have located promising offers, apply with all pertinent information and documents, and any creative materials the sponsor requests. The work you put into winning performing arts scholarships will ensure that you save the most money possible in tuition and fees.

Art has many forms and although performing in your youth may not bring huge paychecks, it will truly nourish your soul. Below we will explore the most common avenues of art, the varied careers to which your schooling may lead you and some scholarships that will help to pay for your schooling.

At the bottom of the page you will find Performing Arts Scholarships for students. If you meet their requirements, you may be able to secure financial aid for college from one or more.

Music Performing Arts Scholarships

Music is a major study area with multiple facets. It incorporates esthetic appreciation, composition, arranging, performance and production in music works. You will usually work towards a Bachelor of the Arts degree in this field, and performing arts scholarships will defray your costs. You should know that a music major B.A. is mainly academic and does not directly apply to performance.

If you wish to become a performer, you may wish to pursue degrees that emphasize that aspect of music, like a Bachelor’s of Music. You may take these classes in a conservatory or collage.

In a Bachelor of Arts in Music, you will opt for one of several study programs:

  • Composition and theory
  • Literature
  • Musicology
  • Music cultural background
  • Musical performance
  • Music industry

Programs vary widely from one school to the next, so you should investigate carefully any colleges you are considering. This will help you to find the ones that best meet your interests and needs and offer performing arts scholarships.

Classes in this field include music introduction, music structure and style, harmony, composition and theory, elementary (and then advanced) auditory training and the history of music.

Career paths include choreographer, arranger, college instructor, music coach, composer, music producer, music director, orchestra conductor, music teacher, stage manager, professional musician and technical music writer.


Drama, Theater of the Arts & General Theater Scholarships

weird theater scholarships

A major in drama will cover many different aspects of the theater, including theater history, theatric criticism, directing, acting, scenery, lighting, state managing, costume design and administration of arts. Students with performing arts scholarships usually focus on a couple of these areas in their study. You will need a basic background in all focus areas, and competition in the performing arts arena is fierce.


Education for the Theater Scholarships

Plans of study for theater include interviews before you are accepted, as well as auditions. Some study portions relate to academic subjects, but the program essence is in learning and then practicing the skills that can lead to a theater career.

You will need to demonstrate proficiency in various skills of theater, through working on actual productions. Colleges with strong drama programs may support repertory companies, where students perform in and produce several plays each year.

Classes include:

  • Principles of acting
  • Stage makeup
  • Speech for actors
  • Play analysis
  • Play production
  • Stage sound
  • Music
  • Dance
  • Costume design
  • Lighting design
  • Music theater
  • Directing
  • Voice

Possible careers for graduates include actor, director, arts director, drama critic, drama teacher, drama coach, playwright, fashion model, stage manager, prop manager, technical writer, stunt performer and producer.


The Art of Dance

dance scholarships

The major you will study in dance consists of studying the practice and theory of dance, its various forms and types of choreography. Colleges that offer dance majors and performing arts scholarships will prepare their students to teach dance or become professional dancers. Dance is a unique performing art. In order to be admitted to undergrad studies, you must have successful auditions and, to a lesser degree, a good high school academic record.


Education in Dance Scholarships

Studying dance practice includes all forms, like ethnic dances, dances from other countries, historical dance forms, modern dance, tap dance, jazz and ballet. There are also liberal arts studies included as core requirements. You will learn to understand choreography and work towards choreographing your own piece.

Possible dance careers include choreographer, acrobat, dance therapist, dance instructor, dance academy proprietor, professional dancer, director and stunt performer.


The Most Popular Performing Arts Scholarships


  1. The Donna Reed Scholarship for Performing Arts

This scholarship was developed for students wishing to pursue studies in musical theater, vocal arts, instrumental arts, acting or dance. You will be required to submit a visual or audio application and be a permanent US resident or citizen. Their official website contains other valuable information.


  1. Nellie Love Butcher Music Performing Arts Scholarships

If you are pursuing study in the fields of piano or voice, you may be eligible for these specialized scholarships. Preference will be given to students who attend Washington D.C.’s Duke Ellington School of the Performing Arts. You must receive a sponsorship letter from your local Daughters of the American Revolution chapter in order to qualify. See more at the DAR site.


  1. VSA Discovery Award for Playwright Studies

If you wish to express your personal views through the window of playwriting, you may qualify for this scholarship. You must be in middle school or high school. In addition, you must be a US citizen and send a submission of a one-act play covering 40 pages or less, with the subject being disability.


  1. Eugenia Vellner Fischer Performing Arts Scholarships

If you or someone you know has competed at the national, state or local level of the Miss America pageant from 1988 to 2015, you or they may be eligible for these scholarships. It does not matter if you or your acquaintance won or lost. You must be in the pursuit of an undergrad or master’s degree in performing arts.


  1. Aiko Susanna Tashiro Hiratsuka Memorial Scholarship

This specialized scholarship was designed for performing arts students who are also Japanese American Citizens League members and who are already studying college-level performing arts.


  1. Community and Junior College Performing Arts Scholarships

If you are a full-time student and currently attend an Alabama public community or junior college, you may be qualified for one of these scholarships. You will also need to demonstrate talent through an audition, whether you have financial assistance needs or not.


  1. Vivian Klemz Memorial Scholarship

The Ventura County Community Foundation in California administers this scholarship. You may qualify for it if you are an undergraduate student who is pursuing an arts degree program in an accredited performing arts school. Preference is given to applicants who are female, and all applications must be from students who graduated from a Ventura County, California private or public high school.