Joseph BELLENS, was born in1876-1939 in Hoogstraaten in the Antwerp province (Belgium). At the Malines Conservatory and the Lemmens Institute he was one of the pupils of Edgar Tinel. He was an organist and choirmaster of the Redemptorist church in Limerick (Ireland) st. Adolphus, one of the most beautiful churches in Ireland.
Here is a link to their website:
Bellens composed some sacred music (for SATB choir and organ) and music for the organ.
Like his countryman Joseph Sireaux, he was involved in the relief of Belgian refugees at the start of the first world war. He welcomed 40 of them in Limerick in december 1914.
On IMSLP there are only three organ pieces present of his. Two of them I play here.
Apparently he did not write very much, although he was bery famous in his time and was known as an excellent improvisor.
He remained in Limerick from 1898 until 1919, when he returned to Belgium to become a music professor at the seminary in Hoogstraten.
His “Bewerkte Koraal” is a prelude on “Wo soll ich fliehen hin”.
It is a nice and simple piece, the melody in the pedal part, with beautiful harmonies.
The cantabile is also nice and flowing.
It is a pity that Bellens did not write more organ works, (at least I could not find it) because these two show, that he was clearly able to write good and beautiful music.