Formed in 1994 at the Royal College of Music in London, the Belcea Quartet has recorded the complete string quartets of Beethoven, Brahms, Bartók and Britten. For this new Alpha release the ensemble has chosen two works by one of the leading composers of twentieth-century chamber music, Dmitri Shostakovich. The Quartet no.3, of historic importance, was initially censured by the Soviet regime, then revised by Shostakovich for it's first performance in 1946; the refined playing of the Belcea Quartet brings out all of the piece's contours. The Piano Quintet is among it's composer's most famous works and significantly contributed to his success on the international scene and with the Soviet authorities. The Belcea Quartet performs it in the company of the Polish pianist Piotr Anderszewski: the result is a musical encounter at the highest level of excellence.