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Sophie-Veronique Cauchefer-Choplin

About this Artist

SOPHIE-VÉRONIQUE CAUCHEFER-CHOPLIN was born in Nogent-le-Rotrou, France. She grew up in a musical family, where she received piano instruction as a small child. After completing piano, organ (with Gérard Letellier), and harmony courses at the École Nationale de Musique of Le Mans, she entered the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris, where she studied the organ with Rolande Falcinelli. She was awarded the first prizes in organ, improvisation, harmony, fugue, and counterpoint (in the classes of Jean Lemaire, Michel Merlet, and Jean-Claude Henry). Her academic success was rewarded in 1980 with a prize from the French Ministry of Culture.

Cauchefer-Choplin was named titular of the Grand Orgue of Saint Jean-Baptiste de la Salle in Paris in 1983. In 1985, she added the position of co-titular of the Grand Orgue of Saint Sulpice Paris with Daniel Roth. In 1990, after an advanced teaching by Loïc Mallié, she became the first woman to win the second prize in improvisation at the Chartres International Organ Improvisation Competition.

Cauchefer-Choplin has an extensive international career, having given recitals in Europe, Russia, Japan, Singapore, China, Iceland, the United States, Canada, and Australia. Since 1998, she has given master classes in improvisation (in Dallas, Chicago, New York, Washington, Minneapolis, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, Melbourne, Sydney, many French locations, and others) and has led an organ improvisation course in London. In 2008, she became Organ Professor at the Royal College of Music of London. She is regularly invited to judge in national and international organ competitions (AGO National Convention – Chicago 2006, Biarritz 2007, Angers 2008; Chartres International Competition 2008).

She is considered by her peers to be one of the best improvisers of her generation. Her recordings of Bach, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Franck, Rheinberger, Messiaen, Grunenwald, and Roth, along with her recorded improvisations, have garnered high praise. Her latest recording (Mendelssohn, Bédard) received a “5 Diapasons” award in June 2008.