Mendelsshon wrote his final great symphonic work in the mid-19th century, first published in 1844, and performed the year after, taking six years to complete this masterpiece, one of the most frequently played in the violin repertoire. It is a sublime, technically superior work.
The subtitle for this piece is a ‘play along’, with the notes transcribed beneath Hilary Hahn’s near-miraculous playing – as one commentator put it, ‘the fourth finger vibrato!’. No mere mortal – by that, I mean a regular violin player – could keep up with her arpeggios. I could barely keep up just watching the notes. Listen along and see, and hear: