Sophie Kauer is a British-German cellist and actress, born in London in 2001. She is currently studying for a BA in Classical Cello Performance at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo, in the class of world-renowned cellist Torleif Thedeén. She started cello lessons aged 8 and, just 18 months later, was accepted into the Junior Department of the Royal Academy of Music in London where she received a scholarship and had won all available prizes by the age of 16. From the ages of 13 to 18, she was also a private student of distinguished cello professor, Melissa Phelps.
Sophie was selected from several hundred cellists and actresses worldwide for a leading role in TÁR, a recent feature film starring Cate Blanchett as an orchestral conductor, written and directed by Todd Field. The film was nominated for 6 Academy Awards, 5 BAFTAS, 3 Golden Globes and was named "Best Picture of the Year" by more critics than any other film released in 2022. Sophie provided live performances for the film, including playing with the Dresden Philharmonic. She also recorded music from the film with the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Natalie Murray Beale, for an album that was released by Deutsche Grammophon in October 2022 and went to No.1 on the US Classical Billboard chart.
Sophie has been named as one of Classic FM’s Rising Stars for 2023. She released her first solo EP with Deutsche Grammophon in March 2023 where she was partnered by pianist Kunal Lahiry, a current BBC New Generation Artist. Titled Unsung, the album features music by Nadia Boulanger, Anatoly Lyadov, Felix Mendelssohn and Clara Schumann and aimed to draw fans of TÁR deeper into the world of classical music, and “show that classical music itself can be very accessible”, as well as to promote music that is not as well known as it deserves to be, including works by female composers.
Upcoming concerts in 2023 include Saint Saëns’ Cello Concerto No 1, conducted by Alondra de la Parra, at the Paax GNP Festival in Mexico, the Elgar Cello Concerto with the Bishop’s Stortford Sinfonia in the UK, conducted by Rebecca Miller, and Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme with the Surrey Mozart Players, conducted by Phillip Ellis. She has previously performed the Dvorak, Elgar and Haydn Cello Concertos with orchestra, as well as the Vivaldi Concerto for Two Cellos and Bruch’s Kol Nidrei. She has also played numerous solo recitals in the UK and in Europe, including as part of the Leeds International Concert Season, at the Breinton Recital Society, Riverhouse Barn Arts Centre, Bach300 Festival and FRAM Konsertserie.
Sophie received a scholarship from the International Academy of Music in Liechtenstein and participates in the Intensive Music Weeks and activities offered by the Academy. She is also a Hattori Foundation Junior Award recipient and has been supported by scholarships from the Astona International Music Academy, the Michael Hurd Memorial Fund, the Guildford Spring Music Festival and the Woking Young Musician Fund. She has been very fortunate to receive masterclasses from Andreas Brantelid, Henrik Brendstrup, Vilde Frang, Johannes Goritizki, Henning Kraggerud, Kian Soltani, Troels Svane and Raphael Wallfisch.
Chamber music has been a fundamental part of Sophie’s musical development with her having attended national chamber courses and received tuition from members of the Doric, Allegri, Haydn and Tippet Quartets from an early age. She also received regular duo coaching from the age of 13 from Alison Rhind, one of the UK’s leading collaborative pianists. At the Norwegian Academy of Music her coaches have included Lars Anders Tomter, Are Sandbakken, Henning Kraggerud, Morten Carlsen and Per Lundberg.
Sophie plays a modern cello made by Ragnar Hayn in 2020.
© Sophie Kauer, March 2023