Jongen, Joseph


Jongen, Joseph

Fantaisie sur deux Noëls populaires wallons, Op.24 for orchestra

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Joseph Jongen – Fantaisie sur deux Noëls populaires wallons, op.24

(b. Liège, 14 Dec 1873 – d. Sart-lez-Spa, 12 Jul 1953)

Marie Alphonse Nicolas Joseph Jongen was born in Liège, Belgium, in 1873. Showing musical gifts at an early age, he enrolled at the Liège Conservatory where he studied piano with Jules Ghymers, harmony with Sylvain Dupuis, organ with Charles-Marie Danneels, and fugue and composition with Jean-Theodore Radoux. When he left Belgium in 1898 for a four-year travel to important musical centres in Italy, Germany, and France, he was already a successful composer who had won the first prize of the Royal Academy of Belgium for String Quartet op.3 in 1894 and the prestigious Prix de Rome for the cantata Comala op.14 in 1897.

After working as an organist and professor of harmony in Liège, at the outbreak of World War I in 1914 Jongen moved with his family to the United Kingdom. Staying there throughout the war, he was active with the piano quartet he founded and he also gave organ recitals. Back in Belgium, he took up the post of professor of fugue at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels in 1920, and from 1919 to 1926 he conducted the ‘Concerts spirituels’ in Brussels, during which audiences were introduced to numerous important new works. In 1925 he became director of the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, being succeeded in 1939 by his brother Léon Jongen (1884-1969), also a composer. Joseph Jongen was a member of the Académie royale de Belgique and a corresponding member of the Institut de France.

Widely recognized in his lifetime as one of the most important Belgian composers, Jongen created a rich catalogue of orchestral and chamber music, as well as sacred and secular vocal pieces. In this catalogue, which includes outstanding works such as the Symphonie concertante for organ and orchestra and the Pièce symphonique for piano and orchestra, a special place is held by Fantaisie op.24. …



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210 x 297 mm



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