Acting Scholarships

Regardless of how much natural talent actors and actresses may have, there are many benefits that come from formal training. A college education is a great way to gain knowledge and experience related to your craft, and can be instrumental in forging the connections that lead to your big break. Obtaining a college education can come with much drama, literally, and especially when it comes to finding the money to pay for school. Luckily, there are acting scholarships out there to help you perfect your skills without acquiring large amounts of student loan debt.

Many of those who pursue careers in the fine arts are propelled by a passion for the arts more than anything else. Landing a career in the theater or in the entertainment business can be overwhelming and gruesome. In this highly-competitive industry, financial aid is certainly encouraged to help support those artistic endeavors. Despite the competition, there are many organizations willing to help individuals accomplish their dreams.

To help prompt your involvement in the performing arts, here are a few scholarship opportunities for acting students. Many acting scholarships are college-specific but there are also many community and organization-specific scholarships. You can find more acting scholarships, as well as awards based on your other talents and interests by conducting a free college scholarship search.

Austin College Theatre Scholarship
Application Deadlines: January 15, Annually
Awarded to students with talents in theatre - both for those who intend to major or minor in theatre and for those who do not intend to major or minor in theatre. A limited number of awards are available each year and are awarded annually. To be considered as a candidate, applicants must have a live audition or portfolio presentation and interview with Theatre faculty in the early spring of their [...] More

Case Western Theater Scholarship
Application Deadlines: January 15, Annually
Case Western Reserve University has made merit-based scholarships available for prospective theater students. Each year, the department of theater awards four full-tuition scholarships to students who intend on majoring in theater, and two scholarships to students who intend on minoring in theater, or those interested in pursuing theater as an extracurricular activity at CWRU.

-Full Tuition [...] More

GRCF Grand Rapids Combined Theatre Scholarship
Application Deadlines: April 01, Annually
The Grand Rapids Combined Theatre Scholarship Fund was founded in 1985 to award college scholarships to students pursuing study in theatre arts. It is supported by ongoing contributions from individuals in the community, and by annual support from Actor's Theatre, Community Circle Theatre, Grand Rapids Civic Theatre, Heritage Theatre, Jewish Theatre, Master Arts Theatre and from proceeds from [...] More

Henry & Joyce W. Sumid Scholarship
Application Deadlines: April 30, Annually
The Henry and Joyce W. Sumid Scholarship is available to high school seniors and college students interested in studying theatre arts and whose legal residence is within these states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Washington.

Previous awardees are also eligible, regardless of location of legal residence.

The value of the scholarship is [...] More

Hope College Distinguished Artist Awards - Dance
Application Deadlines: January 15, Annually
Each year at Hope College up to 60 Distinguished Artist Award (DAA) scholarships are given to students with strong academic records and outstanding creative abilities in art, dance, music, theatre or creative writing. Renewable for four years, the DAA's provide eligible students with $2,500 each year toward their college costs. DAA recipients also take part in a variety of opportunities set up to [...] More

Hope College Distinguished Artist Awards - Theatre
Application Deadlines: January 15, Annually
Each year at Hope College, up to 60 Distinguished Artist Award (DAA) scholarships are given to students with strong academic records and outstanding creative abilities in art, dance, music, theatre or creative writing. Renewable for four years, the DAA's provide eligible students with $2,500 each year toward their college costs. DAA recipients also take part in a variety of opportunities set up [...] More

Hope College Distinguished Artist Awards - Visual Arts
Application Deadlines: February 15, Annually
Each year at Hope College up to sixty Distinguished Artist Award (DAA) scholarships are given to students with strong academic records and outstanding creative abilities in art, dance, music, theatre or creative writing. Renewable for four years, the DAA's provide eligible students with $2,500 each year toward their college costs. DAA recipients also take part in a variety of opportunities set up [...] More

Iowa Scholarships for the Arts
Application Deadlines: February 01, Annually
At the time of application, student applicants must be enrolled at the senior class level in an Iowa high school and display proven artistic ability in the areas of music, dance, visual arts, theater or literature.

Scholarship funds are awarded contingent upon recipients being accepted as full-time undergraduate students at a fully-accredited Iowa college or university. For more information [...] More

JSU Alabama Drama Scholarships
Application Deadlines: February 15, Annually
Each year, the JSU drama department awards thousands of dollars in scholarships to talented, hard-working drama students. Scholarships are awarded through an application process that includes auditions or interviews. Students must also demonstrate a commitment to JSU productions and high academic standards.

For their audition or portfolio review, students should prepare:

Performance [...] More

Liberty Lab for Film Grant
Application Deadlines: May 15, Annually
Get a $10,000 Grant to Make a Short Film in the Liberty Lab Program

Taliesin Nexus is seeking applications for the Liberty Lab for Film program, which provides grants of $10,000 to seven teams of filmmakers to create a short film or web series with a liberty-related theme. Each team of two filmmakers will be assigned a mentor from among our faculty of seasoned Hollywood professionals, [...] More

Loyola University Merit Scholarships
Application Deadlines: February 15, Annually
Scholarships for first-year and transfer students are based on outstanding academic records, competitive test scores, and significant community involvement. Talent-based scholarships are also available in music, theatre arts, and visual arts. Students are automatically considered for institutional merit-based scholarships when they apply for admission. These awards are based solely on academic [...] More

Lycoming College Theater Scholarships
Application Deadlines: March 15, Annually
Students planning to pursue a major or a minor in theatre are encouraged to audition with faculty from the Theatre Department.

There are three categories:
-Acting: perform two contrasting monologues (about three minutes in length total); bring a resume or a list of production experiences, and come ready to discuss your interests and goals
-Directing: bring a resume or a list of production [...] More

MSU Moorhead Freshman Talent Scholarships
Application Deadlines:
MSUM Talent Scholarships are awarded to Minnesota State University Moorhead students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the areas of art, music, cinema arts and digital technologies or theatre arts. Department faculty select talent awards. Contact the departments directly for more information and application procedures.

For more information or to apply, please visit the scholarship [...] More

Studio Theatre Youth On-Stage Scholarship
Application Deadlines: September 17, Annually
Studio Theatre's Young Actors Ensemble Program nurtures creativity, develops vocal and physical skills, and enhances the young actors' ability to perform and work together as part of an ensemble. Class includes theatre games, pantomimes, improvisations, monologues, and scene study from both contemporary and classical literature. Students expand their concentration, observation skills, ability, [...] More

The Princess Grace Foundation Playwright Fellowship
Application Deadlines: March 31, Annually
Working in conjunction with nominating schools and non-profit companies, the Princess Grace Awards recognize the talent of individual artists in theater, dance, and film. This unique collaborative process fills vast voids in the artistic community: scholarships, apprenticeships, and fellowships give emerging artists the financial assistance and encouragement to focus on artistic excellence; [...] More

University of South Alabama/Drama Assistantships/Scholarships
Application Deadlines:
The USA Dept. of Theatre & Dance offers a limited number of scholarships and assistantships, each with their own criteria and requirements. The Laidlaw Trust provides funds for both acting scholarships and tech/design shop assistantships.

To qualify, students must be a drama major, be a full-time student and maintain a 2.5 GPA. For further details and how to apply and audition, please visit [...] More

Last Edited: October 2015

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