The Canadian-born mezzo-soprano, Sophie Harmsen, was raised in South Africa and studied in Cape Town graduating cum laude. During her time there she was member of the Cape Town Opera Studio, and sang roles as Orlowsky in Die Fledermaus, Mercedes in Carmen, Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro and Second Lady in a co-production with La Monnaie, Brussels (Director: William Kentridge) amongst many others. In 2007 she moved to Germany, studied with Professor Dr. Edith Wiens, graduating from the master-class in 2009. In 2008 Sophie was a laureate of the International Robert Schumann Competition.
Kammersängerin Brigitte Fassbaender invited Sophie Harmsen to the Landestheater Innsbruck for the role of Stephano in Romeo et Julliette. The Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival called on her for the scenic production of St. Johnīs Passion (BWV 245) in 2009 (Conductor: Rolf Beck; Director: Robert Wilson). At the Grand Theatre de Luxembourg she debued in the role of Dorabella in Cosi fan tutti. In the 2012 season she was heard in the role of Dorabella in a new production of Cosi fan tutte at the Opera de Dijon under the baton of Christophe Rousset with Les Talens Lyriques (Director: Marcel di Fonzo Bo). In 2013 she is guest at the opera houses of Prag, Caen, Dijon and Luxembourg together with Collegium 1704 and Václav Luks in Myslivecek's L'Olimpiade. In 2014 she can be heard once more in the role of Cherubino in W.A. Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro in Dijon.
As a concert singer Sophie Harmsen debued with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Helmuth Rilling (George Frideric Handelís Messiah) and was subsequently invited to sing numerous concerts with the Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart. In 2009 she was heard at the Brühler Schlosskonzerte with W.A. Mozart arias and was unanimously hailed as a great discovery by the press. She has also performed with the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra (Rihmís Deus Passus), the Helsinki Philharmonic (G.F. Handelís Messiah), the Musikpodium Stuttgart (W.A. Mozart's Requiem and C minor Mass a.o.), Das Neue Orchester at the Bachfest Leipzig (Bach Cantatas), with Capella Augustina at the Haydn Festival in Brühl (J. Haydnís Stabat Mater), with the Crane School of Music, New York and Helmuth Rilling (J.S. Bachís B minor Mass (BWV 232)), with the Lahti Symphony Orchestra and Andreas Spering (R. Schumannís Das Paradies und die Peri), with Les Paladins (Giovanni Battista Pergolesiís Stabat Mater), with the Nürnberger Symphoniker (Bach) and with the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the Thomanerchor Leipzig under the direction of Georg Christoph Biller (J.S. Bachís Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248)). In 2012 she performed e.g. with Anima Eterna (W.A. Mozart's Requiem), at Oregon Bach Festival (Helmuth Rilling and Matthew Halls) and at Haydn Festival in Brühl (Andreas Spering), with the Dresdner Kreuzchor under Roderich Kreile (J.S. Bachís B minor Mass (BWV 232)) and with the Scottish Ensemble Glasgow (Benjamin Brittenís Phaedra).
Upcoming projects include concerts with Collegium 1704 and Václav Luks (J.S. Bachís B minor Mass (BWV 232)), with Musikpodium Stuttgart under Frieder Bernius (Spohr, Schubert, J.S. Bach) and with Kölner Kammerorchester under Andreas Spering (W.A. Mozart's Requiem). In Lille she is going to perform for the first time with pianist Cédric Tiberghien.