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Classical The Best Violists in the World  

Ranker Music
2k votes 340 voters 7.4k views

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
48 11
Kim Kashkashian is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Kim Kashkashian Classical music

2
29 7
Lawrence Power is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Lawrence Power Classical music

3
34 12
Yuri Bashmet is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Yuri Bashmet Classical music

4
28 7
Nobuko Imai is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Nobuko Imai

5
62 41
Pinchas Zukerman is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Pinchas Zukerman Classical music

6
23 8
Maxim Rysanov is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Maxim Rysanov

7
22 10
Roberto Diaz is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Roberto Diaz

8
19 9
Cynthia Phelps is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Cynthia Phelps Classical music

9
19 10
Paul Neubauer is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Paul Neubauer

10
18 9
Atar Arad is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Atar Arad Classical music

11
42 50
Maxim Vengerov is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Maxim Vengerov Classical music

12
54 71
Itzhak Perlman is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Itzhak Perlman Klezmer, Classical music, Jazz

13
6 5
Brad Vanfleet is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Brad Vanfleet

14
25 32
Christopher Sykora is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Jacob Redmon added Christopher Sykora

The Best Classical Pianists in the World

15
33 44
Janine Jansen is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Janine Jansen Classical music

16
7 8
Karen Dreyfus is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Karen Dreyfus

17
8 10
Katrin Meidell is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Katrin Meidell

18
8 10
Lynne Ramsey is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Amy Edmonds added Lynne Ramsey

19
41 62
Hilary Hahn is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Hilary Hahn Classical music

20
23 36
Leonidas Kavakos is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Leonidas Kavakos Classical

21
25 42
Gidon Kremer is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Gidon Kremer Classical music

The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time

22
28 49
Anne-Sophie Mutter is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Anne-Sophie Mutter Classical music

23
23 41
Julia Fischer is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Julia Fischer Classical music

24
14 28
Vadim Repin is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Vadim Repin Classical music

25
26 49
David Garrett is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Violists in the World
David Garrett Classical music, Crossover

26
16 33
Shlomo Mintz is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Shlomo Mintz Classical

27
25 48
Sarah Chang is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Sarah Chang Classical

28
12 27
Kyung-Wha Chung is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Kyung-Wha Chung Classical

The Best Saxophonists in the World

29
12 27
Frank Peter Zimmermann is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Violists in the World

30
17 36
Gil Shaham is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Gil Shaham Classical music

31
25 50
Joshua Bell is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Joshua Bell Classical music

32
13 31
Ivry Gitlis is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Ivry Gitlis Classical

33
10 28
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 24
Ida Haendel is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Ida Haendel Classical

35
9 29
Nigel Kennedy is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Nigel Kennedy Classic rock, Classical music, Jazz

36
7 26
Salvatore Accardo is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Salvatore Accardo Classical

37
5 21
Alexander Markov is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Alexander Markov Classical music

38
20 60
Lindsey Stirling is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Lindsey Stirling Hip hop music, Dubstep, Electronic music

39
2 14
Leila Navarro is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Violists in the World
Leila Navarro added Leila Navarro

40
2 22
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 12
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 23
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