She started violin lessons at the age of six. Her teachers in Romania were Radu Bozgan and Ştefan Gheorghiu. In 1991, she took part in the Yehudi Menuhin International Competition for Young Violinists. Yehudi Menuhin then invited her to study at the Yehudi Menuhin School. Her teacher there was Natalia Boyarskaya. She continued her studies at the Royal College of Music. Her teacher there was Felix Andrievsky.
She has also performed as a soloist in venues such as St John's, Smith Square, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Barbican Hall, Purcell Room, Théâtre du Châtelet and Théâtre des Champs-Élysées. She was awarded the Cobbett Medal for services to chamber music in 2021.
Belcea plays a Pietro Guarneri of Venice violin and owns a contemporary violin made by Felix Daniel Rotaru in 2016.
Competitions and awards
- Joint First Prize, Kloster Schöntal International Competition, Schöntal Abbey, Germany, 1990
- Second Prize, Menuhin Competition, Folkestone, Great Britain. 1995
- Second Prize, International Competition for Young Violinists in Honour of Karol Lipinski and Henryk Wieniawski, Lublin, Poland, 1994
- First Prize, Bromsgrove Festival, 1997
- LASMO Staffa Music Award, 1998