RMF offers four kinds of scholarships to Berks County students and residents:

  1. Merit awards by audition for Berks County students in grades 1-12
  2. Need-sensitive awards for Berks County students in grades 1-12 for private music lessons and instrument upgrades (vocal awards available in grades 7-12 only)
  3. Need-sensitive awards for Berks County students to attend summer music camp (funds may be used at any summer music camp)
  4. Private study awards for adults who wish to study organ, folk music (acoustic guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, etc.), or early instruments (recorder, harpsichord, harp, etc.)


Auditions are held annually, with auditions for 2020 scheduled for Saturday, March 14; and Sunday, March 15 for Berks County students. The Chuck Loeb Memorial Jazz Ensemble auditions will be held on Sunday, February 23 (Snow Date: March 1). Awards are available in nearly every instrument discipline for all applicable ages, and also include college tuition scholarships for high school seniors looking to enroll in college as a music major. Please download our Scholarship Directory for complete listing of available awards and guidelines.

Merit applications must be complete and submitted by Friday, January 31, 2020, to be considered for the 2020 merit auditions.

The deadline for merit auditions is strictly enforced. Applications must be submitted via website by 11:59 PM on deadline date, delivered to RMF’s office by 5:00 PM on deadline date, or postmarked deadline date. Submitted applications should be complete (photo, music selections, accompanist name, college materials, etc.). Applications should be complete at the time of submission. Students submitting incomplete applications risk losing their audition placement or review consideration.


RMF understands that music can be expensive for families. To help students achieve success in music, need-sensitive awards were created to assist Berks County families in paying for private music lessons, summer music camp, and instrument upgrades. Families are asked to submit a paragraph that explains their financial situation, but no formal documentation is required. Examples of financial need statements may include if a family qualifies for free/reduced lunch, recent job loss, limited disposable income, etc. In most cases the family will remain responsible for some portion of the expense, which is usually the first $5.00 of each private music lesson, or some portion of an instrument upgrade or summer music camp tuition.

Applications are accepted throughout the year for review at our quarterly meetings. Deadlines are noted below, and applications must be complete by the deadline in order to be considered for review. Applications are considered complete when they include application, study essay, and teacher recommendation.  The deadline schedule for 2020 is as follows:

Submit Private Study/Instrument Upgrade Scholarships by:

Friday, February 21, 2020 (decisions announced via mail week of March 2)

Friday, April 24, 2020 (decisions announced via mail week of May 11)

Friday, July 24, 2020 (decisions announced via mail week of August 3)

Friday, October 23, 2020 (decisions announced via mail week of November 2)

Submit Summer Camp Scholarships by:

Friday, April 24, 2020 (decisions announced via mail week of May 11)

Overview of Guidelines for RMF’s Need-Sensitive Awards