bands/musicians The Greatest Violists of All Time  

Ranker Music
4.9k votes 953 voters 19.8k views 60 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the best viola players in history

If you’re a fan of classical music, you're familiar with the viola. A member of the string family, it is often confused with the violin, but is slightly larger and as a result, has a deeper sound. It is played with the bow and is unique in classical music as viola parts are usually written in the alto cleft, which is rarely used otherwise. The viola plays a pivotal role in orchestral music and requires a great deal of skill to master. These best violists of all time are truly the greatest violists in history.

Who are the greatest violists of all time? This list features the musicians who have spent years honing their skills and becoming proficient on the viola. Their dedication comes through each time they pick up their instrument. The violists on this list come from all time periods, past and present, and have dazzled audiences for decades.

This list of the greatest violists of all time has been ranked by the community's votes and features musicians like David Garrett, Itzhak Perlman, and L. Shankar. Vote up the best viola players below or add a violists you think is the best if he or she isn't already on the list.
list ordered by

1
187 86
Jascha Heifetz is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Jascha Heifetz Classical music

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2
190 90
Fritz Kreisler is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Fritz Kreisler Classical music

3
182 90
Itzhak Perlman is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Itzhak Perlman Klezmer, Classical music, Jazz

4
140 62
David Oistrakh is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
David Oistrakh Classical music

5
122 52
Nathan Milstein is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Nathan Milstein Classical music

6
176 89
Niccolò Paganini is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Niccolò Paganini Romantic music, Classical music

7
403 260
Lindsey Stirling is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
NoahAlexanderNorton added Lindsey Stirling Hip hop music, Dubstep, Electronic music

8
107 61
Yehudi Menuhin is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Yehudi Menuhin Classical music, Jazz

9
72 44
Anne-Sophie Mutter is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Anne-Sophie Mutter Classical music

10
116 86
Pablo de Sarasate is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Pablo de Sarasate Classical music

11
122 93
David Garrett is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
David Garrett Classical music, Crossover

12
52 29
Kyung-Wha Chung is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Kyung-Wha Chung Classical

13
90 66
Leonid Kogan is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Leonid Kogan Classical music

14
61 55
Hilary Hahn is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Hilary Hahn Classical music

15
62 58
Joshua Bell is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Joshua Bell Classical music

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16
16 6
William Primrose is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
georgedeneff added William Primrose

17
43 38
Henryk Wieniawski is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Henryk Wieniawski Classical

18
40 38
Pinchas Zukerman is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Pinchas Zukerman Classical music

19
36 38
Sarah Chang is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Sarah Chang Classical

20
12 9
Yuri Bashmet is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
georgedeneff added Yuri Bashmet Classical music

21
33 38
Janine Jansen is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Janine Jansen Classical music

22
24 30
Giuseppe Tartini is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Giuseppe Tartini Baroque music

23
21 26
Arthur Grumiaux is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Arthur Grumiaux Classical music

24
3 2
Paul Hindemith is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
gnicholls added Paul Hindemith Opera, Ballet, Classical music

25
18 23
Henryk Szeryng is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Henryk Szeryng Classical; Baroque

26
20 26
Arcangelo Corelli is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Arcangelo Corelli Baroque music

27
4 4
Lionel Tertis is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
gnicholls added Lionel Tertis

28
20 27
Ida Haendel is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Ida Haendel Classical

29
2 2
Milton Katims is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
gnicholls added Milton Katims Classical music

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30
2 2
Rivka Golani is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
gnicholls added Rivka Golani

31
16 23
Louis Spohr is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Louis Spohr Opera, Classical music

32
16 24
Eugène Ysaÿe is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Eugène Ysaÿe Classical music

33
0 1
Nobuko Imai is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Frank Cranmer added Nobuko Imai Classical

34
0 1
Kim Kashkashian is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Frank Cranmer added Kim Kashkashian Classical music

35
13 22
Joseph Szigeti is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Joseph Szigeti Classical

36
11 19
David Aaron Carpenter is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
selebash added David Aaron Carpenter

37
7 13
Samvel Yervinyan is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
GabeVazquez added Samvel Yervinyan

38
6 12
Jean-Luc Ponty is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
slaft added Jean-Luc Ponty Crossover jazz, Jazz fusion, Post-bop

39
31 50
Isaac Stern is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Isaac Stern Classical music

40
12 22
Michael Rabin is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Michael Rabin Classical

41
12 22
Henry Vieuxtemps is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Henry Vieuxtemps Classical

42
8 18
Ayla Erduran is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Ayla Erduran Classical

43
22 41
André Rieu is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
AndreasJanke added André Rieu Classical music

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44
10 22
Ole Bull is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Ole Bull Classical music

45
4 13
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slaft added Robby Steinhardt Rock music, Progressive rock

46
12 27
Rachel Barton is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
warren.shapiro1 added Rachel Barton Classical music, Heavy metal, Baroque music

47
9 23
L. Subramaniam is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
L. Subramaniam Fusion, Carnatic music, World music

48
7 20
Eric Stanley is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Famous Violinists added Eric Stanley Hip hop muisic, Pop

49
13 31
Gidon Kremer is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Gidon Kremer Classical music

50
9 26
Shlomo Mintz is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Violists of All Time
Shlomo Mintz Classical