If you like a silly game, count the letters in your name

October 6, 2009 at 06:19 PM ·

Dutch violinist Rudolf Koelman was interviewed on Dutch radio last Sunday, presenting his newest Paganini CD. He made the observation that many famous violinists have exactly thirteen letters in their name -- see below. But not Paganini: he has 14. This made me think of this totally silly game.


Giovanni Battista Viotti
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Johann Sebastian Bach
Arabella Steinbacher
Archangelo Corelli
Rodolphe Kreutzer
Augustin Hadelich
Demetrios Dounis
Pietro Locatelli
Giuseppe Tartini
Antonio Vivaldi
Nicolò Paganini
Arthur Grumiaux
Herman Krebbers
Liza Ferschtman
Alexander Kerr
Luigi Tomasini
Fritz Kreisler
Joseph Joachim
Jascha Heifetz
Rudolf Koelman
Yehudi Menuhin
Itzhak Perlman
KyungWha Chung
Matthew Denton
Jaap van Zweden
Henryk Szeryng
David Oistrakh
Johanna Martzy
Michael Rabin
Janine Jansen
Walter Reiter
Chloë Hanslip
Julia Fischer
Simone Lamsma
Peter Cropper
Frank Almond
Eugène Ysaÿe
Laurie Niles
Marie Soldat
Leonid Kogan
Isaac Stern
Emmy Verhey
Peter Brunt
Vera Beths
Jenö Hubay
Theo Olof
Ole Bull
Ray Chen
Hu Kun

Replies (58)

October 6, 2009 at 08:06 PM ·

M-I-C-H-A-E-L         D-I-V-I-N-O

1-2-3-4-5-6-7    8-9-10-11-12-13 !



October 6, 2009 at 08:58 PM ·

B-A-R-T M-E-I-J-E-R= 10

S-T-E-P-H-E-N B-R-A-V-A-T-I= 14

L-A-U-R-I-E N-I-L-E-S= 11

R-A-P-H-A-E-L K-L-A-Y-M-A-N= 14

B-R-Y-A-N H-O-N-G= 9

J-O-S-H-U-A B-E-L-L= 10

H-I-L-A-R-Y- H-A-H-N= 10

A-N-N-E H-O-R-V-A-T-H= 11

J-A-S-M-I-N-E R-E-E-S-E= 12

S-A-N-D-E-R- M-A-R-K-U-S= 12

E-M-I-L-L-Y G-R-O-S-M-A-N= 13!!!!!!!!!!! DING, DING, DING!!!!!!

C-O-R-W-I-N S-L-A-C-K= 11

A-N-N-E-M-A-R-I-E  P-R-O-U-L-X= 15

S-M-I-L-E-Y H-S-U= 9

M-A-R-I-N-A- F-R-G-O-U-L-A-S= 14

T-O-M- H-O-L-Z-M-A-N= 10


October 6, 2009 at 09:03 PM ·

O.K. V.Commies!!!!!!!!!  Start listing names to see what the # of letters in their name adds up too!!!!

October 6, 2009 at 11:14 PM ·

Patricia Baser= 13

October 6, 2009 at 11:25 PM ·

I have 11?  Fine, I quit.





October 7, 2009 at 01:43 AM ·

I've got 14 letters and I'm very happy and honoured to be in a list with Vivaldi, Paganini and Grumiaux.   Definitely quite good enough for me!!!

October 7, 2009 at 01:51 AM ·

Dimitri Adamou

13 XD


October 7, 2009 at 02:07 AM ·

dang! If Stephen had been spelt Steven I could have been a contender....


Don`t forget Simon Fischer next to Julia Fischer....



October 7, 2009 at 02:17 AM ·

 TASHA MINER = 10.  I'm up there with Hilary Hahn.  Close enough. =P

October 7, 2009 at 02:20 AM ·

This is not a ‘silly’ game at all…!!!

But if we use the universal code-conversion table………

1= a, j, s;

2= b, k, t;

3= c, l, u;

4= d, m, v;

5= e, n, w;

6= f, o, x;

7= g, p, y;

8= h, q, z;

9= i, r

We may arrive at a Psychic reading of our given names. We use the given name because this is our way of greeting each other, therefore when our name is spoken this sends out a vibration to the universe.

Our given name gives us who we will be in our lives, our personality, our direction,

if a person uses an abbreviation of their name, or a nickname, then this is used instead of the given name.


I noticed Buri is the only member mentioned with their nickname…..


The given name vibration of 5.……………

Freedom is of major importance to you. You are a free thinker, and may at times have an unorthodox way of doing things. You are well aware of the intuitive side of your nature, and are willing to make the changes in your life, that are necessary for your personal growth. You are a knowledgeable person and you can carry a conversation on many different levels. As a deep thinker you at times may go a little too deep, when sorting out your concerns, and it is important to you to be free from the restraints of the past.

How close is that Buri…?

October 7, 2009 at 03:35 AM ·

 Ausar Merr Amon = 13 Im with Jascha heifetz!!!

October 7, 2009 at 03:41 AM ·

 I got Kreutzer. Figures.

Kristin Mortenson

(a/k/a Kristin Oppenheim)

October 7, 2009 at 04:15 AM ·

 There are several more greats with 13 letters. Three of which are:

 1. Joseph Szigeti 2. Pablo Sarasate 3. Georges Enescu.



October 7, 2009 at 05:06 AM ·

 Also Erick Friedman = 13.

October 7, 2009 at 06:04 AM ·

Here's a few more twelvers.................


Nigel Kennedy.

Rachel Podger.

John Holloway.

Otakar Sevcik.

Anton Stamitz.

Igor Oistrakh.

Must not forget....

Jean-Luc Ponty and Jerry Goodman.

October 7, 2009 at 06:59 AM ·

I knew it!  I am indeed destined for fame!

October 7, 2009 at 07:02 AM ·

cool....13 for me too.....even if I use my maiden name....

October 7, 2009 at 10:35 AM ·

 how about benno rabinoff = 13

October 7, 2009 at 12:41 PM ·

If I use my maiden name I get 12....can I count the space and make it 13. LOL

October 7, 2009 at 03:00 PM ·

I'm another 10'er. I even sing 10'er!


October 7, 2009 at 03:05 PM ·

Oliver, didn't Erick Friedman add the "K" to the end of his first name in order to add up to 13?  At Heifetz's suggestion?  I thought I read this somewhere...

October 7, 2009 at 03:24 PM ·


October 7, 2009 at 05:44 PM ·

Okay I just saw this, what the! Bart! Get my name off that list, for crying out loud!

But all right, 11 letters for me. I guess if I'm going to join the ranks of famous people simply due to the number of letters in my name, I might as well get really pretentious about it and add a few more 11-letter friends:

W-I-L-L-A  C-A-T-H-E-R


M-I-C-K-E-Y  M-O-U-S-E

 Anne, look at that, one more thing in common!

October 7, 2009 at 06:31 PM ·

Oliver, Thanks!

Laurie, Graeter's, Mr. K, and 11.  There's no stopping us now...

And, another 13 is Jeffrey Holmes, the luthier that posts here.

October 7, 2009 at 08:44 PM ·

L - Y - D - I - A -  J - O - Y -  Y - O - D - E - R -                                                                          

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 -  6 - 7 - 8 -  9 -10 -11- 12- 13!  HOORAH!!!!!

(I hope middle names count)

October 7, 2009 at 10:50 PM ·

15 does this means I'm too good or too mediocre???   Surely the second... : (  AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

Ann-Mary Proulx = 13    ( see It's all because I'm a Frenchie... : )



October 7, 2009 at 11:18 PM ·

Thanks for that link Dimitri.............now I am little confused.Should I become a famous violinist by adding a letter to my name..?....Henryk Butcher. OR, should I bcome a rock star by subtracting a letter..?..........Henry Bucher.  ( OH, I remember being in a lot of trouble with my french teacher when I scribed my name on my excersise book......Henri Boucher. )


 I think it might be a little TOO LATE for either................well now I know what to do in the next life.


October 8, 2009 at 02:33 PM ·

if I count right

19 for Hansjuergen Kohlhaas....wow

if  I stick to the German Umlaut ü it's 18 and shake hands with ...OMG


October 8, 2009 at 02:39 PM ·

C-H-R-I-S-T-I-A-N-F-E-R-R-A-S= 15

R-A-C-H-E-L-B-A-R-T-O-N-P-I-N-E= 16

T-A-S-M-I-N-E-L-I-T-T-L-E= 13!!!!!!!

R-U-G-G-I-E-R-O-R-I-C-C-I= 13 !!!!!!!

M-I-C-H-A-E-L-M-C-L-E-A-N= 13 !!!!!!!!!

October 8, 2009 at 04:49 PM ·

This has always been a silly issue for me when filling out forms.

Crisostomo Chaves Zulueta = 23

another prime numer

October 8, 2009 at 06:09 PM ·

Wow, just realized I have 19 letters in my, same as Bach, and same initials too!


Jeremy Stephen Buzash (JSB)

Johann Sebastian Bach (JSB)


I'm pretty sure that this was not intentional on my parents behalf since they probably didn't know who Bach was before I started playing his pieces, lol.

October 10, 2009 at 08:06 AM ·

Fumiaki Miura - 12

Clara-Jumi Kang - 13

Yura Lee - 7

Yusuke Hayashi - 13

Hyuk Joo Kwun - 11

Solenne Païdassi - 15

Congratulations to all!

October 10, 2009 at 10:31 AM ·


I think I am right in saying you missed an absolutley fantastic 13er:


Aldo Ferraresi.

Anybody interested in a truly devilish player should wake up and smell the roses....



October 10, 2009 at 04:21 PM ·

Erick Friedman may have added a letter to his name so that it might contain 13 letters, but that's nothing compared to Jascha Heifetz himself, who must have left Darkest Russia for the same reason. In Cyrillic it's only nine: Ja-sch-a H-e-i-f-e-ts.

October 10, 2009 at 05:18 PM ·

If I go with Chris instead of Christopher I have 13...maybe I should change all my future programs...

October 11, 2009 at 12:01 AM ·

For some reason, that would make you sound more like a jazz musician. 

...hmm, Vince Guaraldi: 13.  Bob Brookmeyer: 13... 

October 16, 2009 at 02:46 PM ·

I-N-G-R-I-D C-L-E-M-E-N-T 13!!!! YEY!!!

October 16, 2009 at 02:49 PM ·

R-O-Y-C-E-M-F-A-I-N-A-S-R= 13 Woo Hoo!!!!!!

{Royce M. Faina Sr.}

October 16, 2009 at 03:26 PM ·

Wow, 13 letters in my name.

And sharing birthdays with famous 13's: Heifetz & Kreisler!

I should really start to practice a lot more :-)

(Maybe on average most people, not just violinists, have names of 13 letters???)

(And I should practice more regardless of what could come out.... )

October 16, 2009 at 05:25 PM ·

No!!  I want 16 because A-N-N-E-S-O-P-H-I-E-M-U-T-T-E-R has 16!!!!!!!

I am changing my name.

From now on, you all must call me Jasmine Rees-Reese.

Thank you for respecting my wishes.

October 17, 2009 at 02:20 AM ·

Why not, Jasmine Jazy Reese?

October 17, 2009 at 05:00 AM ·

Because I spell Jazzy with two Zs.  Jazy is more like that rapper Jay-z.

Okay, well we have to come up with something for me so I can get into the Anne-Sophie Mutter leagues.


October 17, 2009 at 03:36 PM ·

How about 'Jazi'.  Looks exotic almost Arabic!

October 17, 2009 at 06:24 PM ·

J-E-N-N-I --- T-H-O-M-P-S-O-N = 13 woohoo!

Does that mean I'll fail at the masters I just applied for in jazz vocals?

October 17, 2009 at 09:05 PM ·

Thank you all for your responses! Keep them coming.

Bart Meijersky -- I knew there was a way to get to 13!

October 18, 2009 at 04:32 AM ·

I heard that Erick Friedman originally spelled his name without the "k", and that it was Heifetz who encouraged him to add it, to get to the "lucky 13". This can be a delicate matter, and I never asked Glenn Dicterow (with whom I studied) if he ever added the 2nd "n" to his name from similar encouragement.

I once had a teacher named Arturo Delmoni (13) who (I think half-seriously) said that I should re-spell my name with an "f" to get to this supposedly magic number. I told him that I liked my name the way it was, and after going home and thinking about it, told him at the next lesson about Paganini and Grumiaux (- didn't think about Vivaldi-) whose names came to 14 letters, like mine!

BTW, a couple of pretty good fiddlers named  Aaron Rosand and David Nadien did rather well for themselves with just 11 letters a piece. The moral of my story? Darned if I know!

PS Henry Butcher, are you serious/knowledgeable about your numerology? Your reading of Buri sounds somewhat like my concept of myself - maybe that's why I like him! Please do me!

October 18, 2009 at 12:05 PM ·


9 is also my lucky number :)

October 18, 2009 at 08:07 PM ·

Karen Allendoerfer = 17

Karen Lona Allendoerfer =21

I like Corelli fine, but I like Mozart better.  Keep the middle names!

October 19, 2009 at 12:51 AM ·

S-m-i-l-e-y  H-s-u-b-e-r-g (13)

The one and only jewish chinese violin virtuoso

October 19, 2009 at 05:15 PM ·

Didn`t Benno Rabinoff also add an F to get to the magic 13. When I was growing up no athlete wanted to wear the #13. It was considered unlucky.

October 22, 2009 at 04:17 AM ·

BTW, it depends on the tradition. In the Jewish tradition, 13 is an auspicious number. Moses cited 13 attributes of God, and of course a young man gets Bar-Mitzvah'd at the age of 13.

I wonder who started this tradition in the violin world? I suspect it was Heifetz. I heard that he was supersticious, and he was close friends with Fritz Kreisler, who not only also had 13 letters in his name, but with whom he shared the same B-day - Feb. 2.

January 13, 2010 at 08:35 PM ·

Here's a warm welcome to Galina Heifetz!

January 15, 2010 at 04:58 PM ·

Can we add Nathan Milstein under  the number 14 and David Nadien under the number 11?

January 16, 2010 at 11:27 AM ·

T H E O D O R    T A I M L A = 13!!
I'm going to be famous now!!
Still haven't had my first lesson but we'll see if this theory will stand :)
 Oh, I have a friend too who has 13 letters but hmm.. he's not a violinist, simply a good pianist.

January 16, 2010 at 02:47 PM ·

My name gives 12. I suppose when I'm on the verge of becoming famous, I might add another letter. Something like Emanuel Tabora or Manuel Taborah. I kind of like Taborah, it seems somewhat misterious, or something...

January 16, 2010 at 11:36 PM ·

<<PS Henry Butcher, are you serious/knowledgeable about your numerology?>>


No, not in the slightest, just thought I'd add to the sillyness of the thread.

And if Buri's reading sounds like the concept of your self then maybe your reading is really Buri's. Oh I don't know, all the readings sound somewhat like my concept of my self.........?


Raphael.......9+1+7+8+1+5+3 = 34, 3+4 = 7.


The given name vibrations of number 7....


You may have a quiet and reserved nature, and excel at whatever you do, especially in the fields of learning and teaching. You have an inner depth that may seek to discover the answers to the question of why we are here and what is the purpose of existence. You can at times, be so absorbed in what you are doing that you may forget that there is also a physical side to your nature. A solitude life attracts you, especially if there has been some turmoil in your life.


Existence, discovery, teaching, learning, quest of knowledge, peaceful, physical, health, solitude, tranquility.

January 17, 2010 at 12:50 PM ·

Aww bummer.  I'm married now and it's too late to change that  ;)  Would have had 13 letters. 


Oh well, I'll have to settle for being a fun loving teacher.  I can live with that. :D

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