Music Universities in South Africa: Eligibility, Courses, Fees, Scholarships

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music universities in south africa

South Africa is home to a diverse array of musical styles, and its colleges and universities provide a thriving environment for budding artists to hone their musical skills. Music Universities in South Africa cater to a wide range of preferences and aspirations. These programs range from the highly regarded South African College of Music in Cape Town, which focuses on African and global music, to the University of Pretoria in Pretoria, which boasts a tradition of distinction in Western and indigenous forms. As you prepare to join the chorus of South African musical talent, you should immerse yourself in performing, composition, musicology, or music technology.

Why Study Music in South Africa?

There are several convincing reasons why studying music in South Africa can be the ideal way to achieve your goals, and the following are some of those reasons:

Immerse Yourself in a Tapestry of Musical Traditions

South Africa’s musical landscape is a Kaleidoscope of auditory experiences, ranging from the deep harmonies of marabi and the ancient rhythms of mbube to the electric beats of kwaito and the global fusion of Cape. When you study here, you will have the opportunity to dive deeply into these rich traditions, gaining an understanding of the historical context.

Hone Your Skills in a World-Class Environment

The South African College of Music at the University of Cape Town is one of the most prominent music institutions in the country. Other notable institutions include the University of Pretoria, which is highly regarded, and the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, which is thriving. In addition to gaining vital insights into the music business, you will have the chance to improve your performing talents, investigate composition and music theory, and explore performance opportunities.

Discover a Gateway to Africa

Due to its geographical location, South Africa serves as an ideal starting point for discovering the varied musical environment that can be found throughout the African continent via music. As a result of your participation in exchange programs, attendance at regional workshops, and collaboration with artists from all across the continent, you will acquire unique insights into the diverse musical landscape of Africa and its effect on the rest of the world.

Top Universities for Music with Fees

South Africa’s Universities provide a wide variety of training grounds for budding artists, and the country’s music culture is pulsating with a dynamic beat. Participate in performing, composition, or musicology at one of these prestigious universities, each of which offers a distinct set of advantages and costs.

University Program FocusTuition Fees
University of the Witwatersrand(WITS)Composition, Performance, Musicology, Music TechnologyR46,100 – R64,500
Rhodes UniversityPerformance, Composition, Musicology, Music EducationR39,500 – R48,500
University of Pretoria(UP)Orchestral Instruments, Vocal Studies, Composition, Music EducationR51,200 – R56,200
University of KwaZulu-Natal(UKZN)Jazz, Indian classical music, Performance, MusicologyR42,000 – R50,000
Stellenbosch UniversityPerformance, Composition, Musicology, Music EducationR54,000 – R60,000

Entry Requirements for Music in South Africa

International students are encouraged to make their way to South Africa’s musical tapestry! To become a member of this lively chorus, you will need to prepare yourself for the following essential requirements: good academic records, strong English abilities, and musical ability that can be sown via auditions and theoretical exams.

Academic Qualifications:

  • Minimum equivalent of South African Matriculation(Grade 12th) with good grades in relevant subjects like English, Music, and Mathematics.
  • Some universities may require specific music theory or performance grades (i.e. grades 5-7 in ABRSM or similar).

English Proficiency

  • Strong English language skills are essential for classroom instruction and communication.
  • Most universities require international students to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores.

Entrance Audition

  • Most programs require a practical audition showcasing your musical skills and potential.
  • Prepare pieces from different styles and periods on your chosen instrument.

Music Theory Test

  • Many universities assess music theory knowledge via written tests or interviews.

Additional requirements

  • Some programs may have specific portfolio or interview requirements.
  • Secure necessary documentation like academic transcripts, proof of financial support, and passport copies.

Documents Required for Music in South Africa

Those international students who want to be artists, South Africa’s tunes are calling out to you! To join the group of musicians, the following is a list of essential documents:

Admission Process for Music in South Africa

Step onto South Africa’s vibrant musical Stage! Here is a quick guide to navigate your admission process:

  • First learn about several institutions and programs, comparing the costs, areas of concentration, and admittance criteria. Choose the harmony that best suits you!
  • Obtain copies of your academic transcripts, evidence that you are proficient in English, and financial papers. 
  • Develop your abilities in preparation for theoretical examinations and auditions.
  • You should submit your online applications well in advance of the deadlines, including recordings of your auditions and essays.
  • By carefully following the directions provided by the South African embassy in your area, you may apply for the right sort of visa.
  • You should rejoice over your offer letter! Make sure you have a place to stay and finish making travel plans.

Cost of Living in South Africa 

Depending on the location and the way of life, the cost of living in South Africa is generally cheap. When compared to countries in the West, pricing should be modest. For shared housing, food, and transportation, you should set up around R7,000 to R15,000 once a month. Take into account the yearly tuition costs, which might vary anywhere from R40,000. In addition, student discounts and scholarships might help alleviate some of the strain. To add some flavour to your musical excursion, you can take advantage of lively marketplaces and economical local eateries.


The lively music industry in South Africa extends a warm welcome to international students, and a variety of scholarships are available for the financial stress that they may be experiencing. Consider some of the following possibilities.

National Scholarships

  • The Mandela Rhodes Scholarships
  • South African National Research Foundation(NRF)

University-Specific Scholarships

  • University of Cape Town Dean’s Scholarship
  • Rhodes University International Merit Scholarship
  • Stellenbosch University Wilgeheuwel Trust Scholarship

International Scholarships

Career Scope

The music sector in South Africa provides a variety of professional opportunities, Performer, composer, Musicologist, music educator, music technologist, artist management, event producer, and music journalist are all careers that are open to you after completing your education. Be proactive, create your network, and continue to develop your abilities and expertise.


Do you, artists from across the world, feel prepared to become a part of South Africa’s thriving chorus? It’s a symphony just waiting to be created, with its one-of-a-kind combination of culture, institutions of world-class calibre, and economical living. Moreover, perform your research on the perfect harmony among the many universities in South Africa, improve your abilities, and immerse yourself in the warm and friendly atmosphere of the South African Music Industry.

Within the context of a country that is pulsating with musical love, this voyage will not just be about academics, it will also be about cultural immersion, personal development, and discovering your voice. You are invited to South Africa, where the stage is waiting for your music to take flight.


Q1. What is the cost of living and studying in South Africa?

South African countries have a cost of living that is relatively low when compared to those of Western Countries. It is reasonable to anticipate spending between R7,000 and R15,000 per month for shared housing, essential consumables, and transportation.

Q2. What is the student life like in South Africa?

A student life experience that is both dynamic and hospitable may be found in South Africa. You may anticipate a community that is not just varied but also rich in cultural experiences, breathtaking natural beauty, and a wide range of extracurricular activities.

Q3. Are there scholarships available for international students?

Yes, there are several different scholarship opportunities available, including national scholarships such as the Mandela Rhodes Scholarship and the NRF Scholarship, scholarships that are unique to universities, and international programs such as the Music Academy International Scholarship Programme.

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I hope that my blog was able to assist you in navigating the many music universities in South Africa. Moreover, if you are interested in pursuing a career in music in South Africa you should get in touch with our team of professionals at Leverage Edu. Further, if you need any assistance with application forms or preparing your letter of recommendation or statement of purpose. They will be able to assist you with each stage and guarantee that you are successfully admitted to the university of your choice. Sign up for a free session now!

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