The BYU Organ Department is thrilled to offer a very exciting opportunity to interested students, alumni, and community members with an organ study tour to France, April 27-May 7, 2018. The tour will be led by BYU organ faculty members Don Cook and Brian Mathias, and will include nine days in France visiting and playing some of the most notable historic instruments this beautiful country has to offer. Tour participants will have the opportunity to experience several of Aristide Cavaillé-Coll’s greatest instruments, including those in St. Sernin (Toulouse), St. Sulpice (Paris), and St. François-de-Sales (Lyon). In addition to these landmark romantic instruments, the tour will also include visits to a number of other Cavaillé-Coll organs as well two very notable French Classic instruments: the famed Cliquot organ in Poitiers and a 1631 instrument by Guillaume Lesselier housed in the chapel of the Charles Nicolle Hospital in Rouen.

In addition to experiencing these remarkable instruments, tour participants will have the opportunity to attend church services in notable French churches, experience French culture (and food!), and of course, enjoy free time in Paris.

Tour Guide

Christophe Mantoux

Christophe Mantoux is Professor of Organ at the Conservatoire Régional de Paris and Pôle Supérieur where he teaches students from all over Europe, the United States, South America, South Korea, and Japan. Previous to his appointment in Paris, he was Professor of Organ at the Conservatoire National de Région of Strasbourg from 1992 to 2011. He also holds the post of Titular Organist at the famous Church of Saint-Séverin in Paris where he has served since 1995.

His international career as a concert organist has taken him to more than twenty countries in Europe, North and South America, South Korea, Japan, Canada, China and the United States. Such extensive concertizing has given him the rare opportunity to perform on many fine instruments from diverse traditions of organ building, thereby enriching his understanding of the organ and its music.

In 1984, Mr. Mantoux won the prestigious Grand Prix d’Interprétation (First Prize in Interpretation) at the Chartres International Organ Competition (Grand Prix de Chartres). Following that success, he served as Titular Organist of the Chartres Cathedral from 1986 to 1992, and he remains a member of the Artistic Committee of the Chartres International Organ Competition.

Born in 1961 in Paris, Mr. Mantoux completed his organ studies with Gaston Litaize at the Conservatoire National de Région of Saint-Maur-des-Fossés. He later studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris, where he won First Prizes in Harmony and Counterpoint.

Besides his active concert schedule and teaching, Mr. Mantoux is regularly invited to conduct masterclasses and workshops as well as to serve as adjudicator for international organ competitions, including the International Organ Competition at Chartres (France), the Gottfried-Silbermann-Orgelwettbewerb Freiberg (Germany), the International Organ Competition in Nurnberg (Germany), the International Organ Competition Tokyo-Musashino (Japan), the Miami International Organ Competition, (Miami, FL, United States), the International Organ Competition at Pistoia (Italy). He is a member of the National Commission for Historical Organs of France. He also leads organ tours in France for interested groups from the United States and other English-speaking countries.

Christophe Mantoux has contributed articles to numerous organ journals, one in English to The American Organist (July 2008). He has recorded two CDs, one of which features the music of Guilain and Marchand, the other includes works of Jehan Alain recorded on the much celebrated Cavaillé-Coll organ in the Abbey Church of St. Ouen de Rouen (Motette 13651), which won the coveted “Grand Prix de l’Académie Charles Cros.” His recording of works of Johann Sebastian Bach on the new organ built in the “Bach” style, by Dominque Thomas in Strasbourg, France, is now available as an MP3 download at:


Note: This schedule is tentative and is subject to change. It will be updated frequently with new information as appointments are secured.

Friday, April 27

Leave immediately following School of Music convocation ceremony to fly to Toulouse

Saturday, April 28

Afternoon: Arrive in Toulouse mid-afternoon, check into hotel
Evening: Visit organ at Basilica of St. Sernin (Cavaillé-Coll, 1889)
Overnight: Toulouse

Sunday, April 29

Morning: Attend sacrament meeting in Toulouse
Afternoon: Masterclass with Christophe Mantoux at Basilica of St. Sernin and visit organ at Gesu Church (Cavaillé-Coll, 1864)
Evening: Visit organ at Musée des Augustins (Ahrend, 1981)
Overnight: Toulouse

Monday, April 30

Morning: Drive to Poitiers (414km)
Afternoon and Evening: Visit organ at Cathédrale de Saint-Pierre (Cliquot, 1791)
Overnight: Poitiers

Tuesday, May 1

Morning: Drive to Rouen (409km)
Afternoon: Visit organs at St. Ouen (Cavaillé-Coll, 1890) and Chapelle de l’Hôpital Charles-Nicolle (Lessilier, 1631)
Evening: Drive to Paris (135km)
Overnight: Paris

Wednesday, May 2

Morning: Visit organ at St. Gervais (Cliquot, 1768)
Afternoon: Visit organ at Église de la Madeleine (Cavaillé-Coll, 1869)
Evening: Visit organ at St. Sulpice (Cavaillé-Coll, 1862)
Overnight: Paris

Thursday, May 3

Morning and Afternoon: Free day in Paris
Optional activity: Non-playing tour of other significant churches: Notre Dame, Sainte-Trinité, St. Clotilde, etc.
Other possible activities: Eiffel Tower, train to Chartres Cathedral, the Louvre, etc.
Evening: Visit organ at St. Louis d’Antin (Cavaillé-Coll, 1858)
Overnight: Paris

Friday, May 4

Morning: Drive to Lyon (464km)
Afternoon: Visit organ at St. François de Sales (Cavaillé-Coll, 1880)
Evening: Group recital at St. François de Sales
Overnight: Lyon

Saturday, May 5

Morning: Drive to Nuits-St-Georges (181km) and visit organ at St. Denis (Cavaillé-Coll, 1878)
Afternoon: Drive to Paris (334km)
Evening: Free evening in Paris
Overnight: Paris

Sunday, May 6

Morning and afternoon: Church services at Notre Dame, St. Sulpice, Sacré Couer, etc.
Evening: Visit additional organ(s) or free evening in Paris
Overnight: Paris

Monday, May 7

Fly back to Utah


Travel to France

Tour participants will be responsible for making their own travel arrangements to France. The tour will begin in Toulouse and end in Paris. Multi-destination airfare for this trip (SLC → TLS, CDG → SLC) is currently selling for around $1,200. The tour bus will depart Toulouse Blagnac airport (TLS) at 4:00pm on Saturday, April 29. Any tour participants arriving after this time will need to make their own travel arrangements to meet up with the group in Toulouse.


Registration will be limited to 25 participants. Tour participants may register for the tour on the following schedule:

  • Current BYU Organ Students and Traveling Companions (limited to one per student): Registration due by September 30
  • BYU Organ Alumni and Traveling Companions (limited to one per alumnus): Registration opens October 1
  • Community Members: Registration opens October 15

Registration for the tour will be handled by the BYU Kennedy Center for International Studies. Please visit for further information and to register.


Any questions regarding the tour can be directed to Brian Mathias: