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Scholarship Auditions

Music scholarships are available to music majors, music minors and music participants. Scholarships are renewable upon meeting the criteria listed in the scholarship acceptance letter and based upon funding.

All music majors must audition for entrance into the program. Students seeking a music scholarship will use that audition process as meeting the requirement. If you are not seeking a music scholarship or are applying after the scholarship process is complete, contact David Holdhusen at or the appropriate faculty member in your area of study to set up an audition. A late audition may take place during the summer months or at the beginning of the semester.

Undergraduate Audition Information


Aiello/Torkelson Scholarship

This scholarship is available to students who are vocal majors or will be vocal majors or to those students who sing in a USD choir. Recipients must maintain a GPA of 2.6 or better. Financial need will be considered, but will not be the determining factor.

GeLoris Akland Music Scholarship

This annual scholarship is for students pursuing a degree in music at USD. Preference will be given to students in the piano or organ programs. Criteria are financial need and potential in music

Elizabeth Kathryn Ames Music Scholarship

This scholarship is provided to students enrolled in the College of Fine Arts in the music department. Financial need will be taken into account.

An Die Musick Scholarship

Voice majors with an emphasis in vocal performance or music education are eligible for this award. Preference is given to students with strong skills in conducting.

Begeman/Griffith Instrumental Music Education Scholarship

Recipients must maintain a 2.6 or higher GPA. First priority is given to an undergraduate instrumental (brass, woodwinds, percussion) player. Second priority will be given to undergraduate music education majors.

Ray DeVilbiss Band Scholarship

Recipients must maintain a 2.6 or better academic record and exhibit satisfactory participation in concert, marching and pep bands for the school year. An initial audition is required. Recipients need not be music majors.

David William Eyres Memorial Scholarship

This scholarship goes to a student in the USD band program.

Fine Arts Recruitment Scholarship

This scholarship is provided to students with the ability and interest to master the keyboard and/or stringed instruments.

Joe Gullion Memorial Scholarship

Scholarships are awarded to students enrolled in the College of Fine Arts and majoring in music at USD. Recipients must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.6 and preference should be given to a student from the Black Hills area of South Dakota.

Ethel Gunderson Memorial Vocal Scholarship

Recipients will be enrolled in the USD Department of Music as voice majors and shall be in their junior or senior year of study. Preference shall be given to female students.

Louise Hansen Music Scholarship

This scholarship is provided for students enrolled in the College of Fine Arts who are participating in the music program.

Bruce and Wendy Hasche Vocal Scholarship

This scholarship is awarded to students who are pursuing their B.M. or B.M.A. in vocal music. Recipients must be registered for a choral ensemble each semester they receive this award.

Carmen Howard Music Scholarship

This scholarship is awarded to full-time students who major or minor in music, with preference given to those whose principal instrument is piano.

Instrumental Music Scholarship

This scholarship is for students involved in instrumental music.

Murrell F. Kautz Scholarship

This scholarship is given to students who are participants in an instrumental music ensemble in the USD Department of Music.

Professor Randal Hale Lease, J.D., and Frances Peterson Lease Scholarship

This scholarship is given to students enrolled as USD music education majors. Recipients should have attained junior or senior class status, have an accumulated GPA of 2.25 or above and should be enrolled as full-time students. Recipients should be residents of South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska or Minnesota. Preference is given to non-traditional students.

Max Leget Pipe Organ Scholarship

These scholarships are awarded to students involved in organ in the College of Fine Arts.

Lyric Strings Orchestra Scholarship

Scholarships are given to music majors in good standing. First preference will be for former students of Karen Lipp or Leona Marek. If no student meets the aforementioned criteria, the scholarship may be given to any student who exhibits talent in string performance or shows strong talent for, aptitude for and desire to become a string teacher.

Robert C. and Leona P. Marek Scholarship

This award is for undergraduate or graduate student scholarships in cello (in honor of Leona Marek), music theory (in honor of Robert Marek), music research or mass communications, with students planning a career in radio or broadcast journalism. Recipients shall have demonstrated excellence in their appropriate category.

Jack L. Noble Scholarship

Scholarships are awarded to music majors studying organ, with preference given to organ majors.

Marjorie Townsley Rawlins Music Scholarship

This scholarship is provided to piano, violin, viola and cello students in the USD Department of Music. Recipients must show a high potential for a career in the field of music.

Rawlins Chair of Music Scholarship

Scholarships are awarded to students in the stringed instrument/chamber music program. 

Gary L. and Deborah Reeves Scholarship

This award is to provide scholarships to proficient freshmen horn or clarinet students judged by the selection committee to have good potential. The scholarship will be renewable for up to three additional years, as long as the student remains eligible. Financial need may be considered.

Ringley Scholarship - Music

This scholarship is for students studying music at USD.

Joseph Schmaderer Scholarship in Voice

This annual $1000 award goes to a voice major in the USD Department of Music who is seeking a B.M. or a B.M.A. degree and maintains at least a 2.6 cumulative GPA each semester. The scholarship is talent based.

Singers Choice Scholarship

This award provides undergraduate talent-based scholarships for students who are enrolled in or accepted by USD and meet all requirements to be a student in good standing. The recipient must maintain at least a 2.6 cumulative GPA, be a vocal music major at USD and participate in choral ensemble at USD each semester.

Mary Ellen Stanley Beukelman Scholarship

This scholarship is for USD students majoring in music.

Usher and Barnes Abell Family String Scholarship

This award is to provide annual scholarships for USD students who play violin, viola, cello or string bass. Recipients must agree to play in the USD orchestra during the year they receive the scholarship. If no string players are eligible, the scholarship may be granted to students pursuing graduate degrees in history of musical instruments, who could play a stringed instrument in collegium musicum.

Vocal Scholarships

Vocal scholarships are given to students in the Department of Music.

J. Laiten Weed Scholarship

Students in the music department who express an interest and exhibit skillful qualities in the study of stringed instruments are eligible for this scholarship.

Truran Piano Scholarships

All incoming freshmen or transfer student pianists who are majoring, minoring or participating in music are eligible to compete. To audition, you must select audition materials that demonstrate two works of contrasting style from two of the following periods of music:

  • Baroque
  • Classic
  • Romantic
  • Contemporary

Audition pieces must be performed from memory. Transcriptions, arrangements and popular music styles are not allowed.

24th Annual Genevieve Truran Piano Competition

The Truran Piano Competition is open to pianists in grades eight through 12. Contestants are divided into categories by school year. One first place and one second place will be awarded for each of the five categories. The first-place cash award for each category is $200; second place, $100. Contestants must play two or three works from memory. The works must be from two of the following compositional periods:

  • Baroque
  • Romantic
  • Classic
  • Impressionistic/Contemporary

Learn More About The Truran Piano Competition

Audition Dates

  • Undergraduate - February 12 & 18, 2022
  • Graduate - February 18, 2022


To apply for any of these scholarships, complete the music scholarship application form. It can be mailed or submitted online for your convenience. Postmark deadline for all is February 18, 2022.

Music Scholarship Application

All programs, policies and procedures described are subject to change. All statements in this publication concerning requirements, dollar amounts, conditions or other matters are for informational purposes only and are subject to change without notice.

Name Department & Office Contact
David Holdhusen
  • Chair, Music / Professor / Director of Choral Activities
W M Lee Center for Fine Arts 114A