The Fitzwilliam Quartet (FSQ) is a string quartet currently consisting of Alan George, viola; Sally Pendlebury, violoncello; and Lucy Russell and Marcus Barcham Stevens, violins.
Founded in 1968 by four Cambridge undergraduates, the Fitzwilliam Quartet was one of the first of a long line of quartets to have emerged under the guidance of Sidney Griller at the Royal Academy of Music. They became well known through their close personal association with Dmitri Shostakovich, who befriended them following a visit to York to hear them play. He entrusted them with the Western premières of his last three quartets, and before long they had become the first group to perform and record all fifteen. These recordings gained international awards, and secured for the quartet a worldwide concert schedule and a long term contract with Decca/London.[non-primary source needed]
In 1977, they won the first ever Gramophone Award for chamber music. In November 2005 the Shostakovich set was included in Gramophone magazine's "100 Greatest Recordings". Today, the FSQ performs a wide repertoire, from the late 17th century to the present day, and remains one of the few established quartets to play on historical instrument setups.