Couperin, Louis

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Couperin, Louis (b Chaumes, c.1626; d Paris, 1661). Fr. composer and organist, first of his family to be organist at St Gervais (from c.1650). Also played vn. and comp. instr. works, incl. 132 pieces for hpd. Uncle of F. Couperin.

The Couperin family were professional musicians in Paris from late in the 16th cent. to the middle of the 19th. Members were organists at St Gervais for over 170 years. François (le Grand) and Louis were the most illustrious of the clan, but others deserving mention were: Margaret-Louise Couperin (b Paris, 1676 or 1679; d Versailles, 1728), singer and harpsichordist, who is known to have sung mus. by her cousin François; Armand-Louis Couperin (b Paris, 1727; d Paris, 1789), composer, organist, and harpsichordist. Org. at St Gervais. Well known for his gifts in improvisation and for some pleasant hpd. pieces. Gervais-François Couperin (b Paris, 1759; d Paris, 1826), son of Armand-Louis, composer and organist. By 1790 was org. of several Paris churches, incl. St Gervais. Played for Napoleon, but comp. a work called Louis XVIII ou le retour du bonheur en France.