Classical The Best Pianists in the World  

Ranker Music
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116.9k votes 16.6k voters 446.6k views 205 items

List Rules Vote up the best pianists working today.

The piano is one of the most popular and most diverse musical instruments in the world. The instrument has permeated through dozens of genres of music, lending itself to help create some of the most moving and emotional pieces of music in history. The people on this list are masters of the piano and are considered giants in the musical world.  

Whether you recognize these musicians or not, they've all carved a place out for themselves in the music business and have become influential and prominent figures in the industry. They are some of the most famous male pianists ever, and there are many talented famous female piano players as well. If you love geeking out on music, we definitely recommend finding some of their music. 

This list is votable and rerankable, so take a look through and vote up your favorite modern pianist in the world. If you don't see someone on here who should be, feel free to add them, but this list is for living contemporary musicians only.

1
2,610 1,985
Martha Argerich is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Argentina

2
1,751 432
Vladimir Horowitz is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America

3
2,310 1,673
Evgeny Kissin is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Russia

4
887 609
Glenn Gould is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Canada

5
1,822 1,746
Yuja Wang is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
MatthewMcCormick added China

6
896 1,247
Maurizio Pollini is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

7
1,534 266
Sergei Rachmaninoff is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America, Russia

8
1,539 1,292
Krystian Zimerman is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

9
849 394
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Massimo Fornetti added Italy

10
938 1,172
Vladimir Ashkenazy is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

11
1,143 435
Mikhail Pletnev is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

12
1,209 703
Grigory Sokolov is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

13
1,384 1,615
Valentina Lisitsa is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
AntoninScheidemann added

14
1,003 1,270
Daniel Barenboim is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Palestinian National Authority, Argentina, Spain

15
898 528
Claudio Arrau is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Chile, United States of America

16
869 647
Radu Lupu is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

17
891 714
András Schiff is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
People's Republic of Hungary, United Kingdom

18
691 713
Sviatoslav Richter is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Massimo Fornetti added Russia, Russian Empire, Soviet Union

19
663 745
Arthur Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Poland, United States of America

20
875 779
Murray Perahia is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America

21
365 455
Ekaterina Mechetina is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
ИльяИванов added

Russia 

22
553 878
Alfred Brendel is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Austria

23
658 748
Marc-André Hamelin is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

24
506 927
Maria-João Pires is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
JoséDuarte added Portugal

25
1,024 255
Arcadi Volodos is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

26
964 404
Franz Liszt is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Hungary

27
963 291
Ivo Pogorelić is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

28
786 1,263
Li Yundi is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
China

29
784 929
Danill Trifonov is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Christine Daffe added

30
527 403
Emil Gilels is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Дмитрий Гаранин added Russia

31
664 121
Artur Schnabel is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
markuka85 added Austria

32
436 113
Vladimir Sofronitsky is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Vera Mancheva added

33
673 303
Nelson Freire is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
AGuzzoni added Brazil

34
386 516
Olga Kern is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
New Mexico added

35
588 636
Frédéric Chopin is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

36
818 927
Mitsuko Uchida is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United Kingdom, Japan

37
1,687 1,685
Lang Lang is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
China

38
1,677 907
Fazıl Say is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
CankutYakut added Turkey

39
373 774
Nikolai Lugansky is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
bo-franzen added Russia

40
554 116
Dinu Lipatti is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

41
467 261
Cyprien Katsaris is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

42
478 740
Hélène Grimaud is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

43
485 83
Heinrich Neuhaus is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Konstantin Arama added

44
470 439
Seong-jin Cho is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

45
725 344
Denis Matsuev is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
gf1121 added Russia

46
427 266
Leon Fleisher is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America

47
190 332
Elisso Virsaladze is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
χαράλαμπος-αθανασόπουλος added

48
475 388
Stephen Hough is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United Kingdom

49
493 257
André Watts is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America

50
438 197
André Previn is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America, Germany