The Piano Quintet Op.44 and Piano Quartet Op.47 date from a brief period during which Schumann focused his attention intensively on chamber music (between June 1842 and January 1843). These works underline his wish to escape from the solo piano, now too restricted for his overflowing imagination, as he told Clara. The Quintet, which made a powerful impression on Wagner, is probably one of his most sophisticated works, into which Schumann poured all the creative energy he derived from meticulous examination of similar works by his predecessors, especially Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Schubert. Alexander Melnikov joins the Jerusalem Quartet, nominated for a 3rd BBC Music Magazine Award in 2012.
The Jerusalem Quartet...are at the peak of their career, still youthful yet playing with the wisdom of 20 years' experience. In the Russian pianist Alexander Melnikov they have a collaborator of rare musical intelligence as well as virtuosity. Another award contender? I guess so. --The Observer