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Classical The Best Violists in the World  

Ranker Music
1.8k votes 290 voters 6.1k views Embed

List Rules Living viola players only. Upvote the best musicians.

The viola is a complex instrument that involves years of mastering the craft. The viola, similar to the violin, is a member of the string family and is played with a bow. However, it is larger than a violin, and has a deeper sound as a result. The viola is essential to any orchestra, the middle voice between the violin and the cello. Who are the best violists in the world?

The musicians on this list are considered the best viola players today. Whether you recognize these musicians or not, they've all carved out a place out for themselves in the music business and have become influential and prominent figures in the industry and are among the many famous violists in the world of classical music. If you love geeking out on music, we definitely recommend finding some of their music.  

This list features the world’s best violists, and is waiting to be voted on and reranked by you. Vote up the best viola players below or add a musician you think is great on the viola, if he or she isn't already on the list.
list ordered by

1
31 5
Kim Kashkashian is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Kim Kashkashian Classical music

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2
26 4
Yuri Bashmet is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Yuri Bashmet Classical music

3
55 37
Pinchas Zukerman is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Pinchas Zukerman Classical music

4
22 4
Nobuko Imai is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Nobuko Imai

5
20 4
Maxim Rysanov is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Maxim Rysanov

6
20 4
Roberto Diaz is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Roberto Diaz

7
18 4
Lawrence Power is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Lawrence Power Classical music

8
16 6
Paul Neubauer is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Paul Neubauer

9
16 6
Cynthia Phelps is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Cynthia Phelps Classical music

10
16 6
Atar Arad is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Atar Arad Classical music

11
37 45
Maxim Vengerov is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Maxim Vengerov Classical music

12
8 7
Lynne Ramsey is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Lynne Ramsey

13
7 6
Karen Dreyfus is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Karen Dreyfus

14
49 65
Itzhak Perlman is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Itzhak Perlman Klezmer, Classical music, Jazz

15
8 8
Katrin Meidell is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Katrin Meidell

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16
29 39
Janine Jansen is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Janine Jansen Classical music

17
23 31
Christopher Sykora is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Jacob Redmon added Christopher Sykora

18
3 4
Brad Vanfleet is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Brad Vanfleet

19
40 59
Hilary Hahn is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Hilary Hahn Classical music

20
22 36
Leonidas Kavakos is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Leonidas Kavakos Classical

21
25 41
Gidon Kremer is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Gidon Kremer Classical music

22
23 39
Julia Fischer is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Julia Fischer Classical music

23
14 27
Vadim Repin is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Vadim Repin Classical music

24
16 31
Shlomo Mintz is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Shlomo Mintz Classical

25
27 49
Anne-Sophie Mutter is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Anne-Sophie Mutter Classical music

26
17 34
Gil Shaham is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Gil Shaham Classical music

27
12 26
Frank Peter Zimmermann is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Violists in the World

28
11 26
Kyung-Wha Chung is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Kyung-Wha Chung Classical

29
24 48
Sarah Chang is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Sarah Chang Classical

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30
24 48
David Garrett is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Violists in the World
David Garrett Classical music, Crossover

31
13 30
Ivry Gitlis is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Ivry Gitlis Classical

32
24 49
Joshua Bell is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Joshua Bell Classical music

33
10 27
Rachel Barton is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Rachel Barton Classical music, Heavy metal, Baroque music

34
7 23
Ida Haendel is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Ida Haendel Classical

35
7 25
Salvatore Accardo is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Salvatore Accardo Classical

36
5 20
Alexander Markov is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Alexander Markov Classical music

37
8 28
Nigel Kennedy is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Nigel Kennedy Classic rock, Classical music, Jazz

38
2 13
Leila Navarro is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Leila Navarro added Leila Navarro

39
19 58
Lindsey Stirling is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Lindsey Stirling Hip hop music, Dubstep, Electronic music

40
2 21
L. Subramaniam is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Violists in the World
L. Subramaniam Fusion, Carnatic music, World music

41
0 11
Roby Lakatos is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Violists in the World
bermadotte added Roby lakatos Jazz, Classical, Klezmer violinist

42
0 21
Aaron Meyer is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Jennifer Shaw added Aaron Meyer Concert Rock Violinist, Classical