About Werner Janssen:
Musical America 50:4 1930; Musician 36:5 December 1931.
JOSEPH JONGEN was born in Liège on December 14, 1873, where he undertook and completed all of his musical studies at the Conservatory. It is said that the healthy solidity of his technique is due to the uniform teaching of his early youth. His musical progress was rapid. In a short time he won all the distinctions which the Conservatory had to offer to a brilliant pupil and, in 1893, he was the recipient of a prize of one thousand francs, offered by the Académie Royale of Belgium for a string quartet. Two years later, he competed for the Prix de Rome, but succeeded only in winning a second prize; he was consoled, however, by winning another prize offered by the Académie Royale, this time for a trio.
In 1897, Jongen made one more effort to win the Prix de Rome; this time he won the first prize. For the next four years, he broadened his outlook and enriched his background by travelling to Berlin, Munich, Leipzig, Dresden, Paris and the principal cities of Italy. The ennervation of travel did not hamper his artistic productivity--for during this trip he composed a Symtphony, which Eugene Ysaye presented in Brussels in 1900, a Violin Concerto, and a Piano Quartet performed by the Société Nationale in Paris in February, 1903.
Upon his return to Belgium, Jongen was appointed professor of harmony and counterpoint at the Liège Conservatory. The War loomed upon the horizon, and early in 1914 the Jongen family migrated and settled in England. Until January 1919 he lived in Bournemouth and London. During his stay in England he formed a piano quartet--together with Désiré Defauw, Émile Doehaerd and Lionel Tertis--which gave concerts thruout England with great success. He also gave a series of organ recitals which added enormously to his prestige.
When the War ended, Jongen returned to Belgium and reassumed his duties at the Conservatory. In 1920, he resigned in order to accept a more significant post as professor of counterpoint and fugue