Classical The Best Pianists in the World  

Ranker Music
Originally by
144.1k votes 18.9k voters 469.4k views 206 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.
Ranker may collect a commission from links on this page. Prices & inventory are accurate as of publish date.

1
2,882 2,367
Martha Argerich is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Argentina

2
2,137 561
Vladimir Horowitz is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America, Russian Empire

3
2,535 1,956
Evgeny Kissin is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Russia

4
1,187 743
Glenn Gould is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Canada

5
977 1,478
Maurizio Pollini is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

6
2,013 2,073
Yuja Wang is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
MatthewMcCormick added China

7
1,698 1,499
Krystian Zimerman is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

8
1,880 328
Sergei Rachmaninoff is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

9
1,028 475
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Massimo Fornetti added Italy

10
1,027 1,365
Vladimir Ashkenazy is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

11
1,337 512
Mikhail Pletnev is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

12
1,098 1,495
Daniel Barenboim is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Palestinian National Authority, Argentina, Spain

13
1,509 1,901
Valentina Lisitsa is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
AntoninScheidemann added

14
1,392 873
Grigory Sokolov is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

15
851 883
Sviatoslav Richter is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Massimo Fornetti added Soviet Union

16
969 883
András Schiff is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
People's Republic of Hungary, United Kingdom

17
984 698
Claudio Arrau is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Chile, United States of America

18
921 826
Radu Lupu is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

19
830 914
Arthur Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Poland, United States of America

20
967 950
Murray Perahia is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
United States of America

21
622 1,051
Alfred Brendel is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
Austria

22
555 1,121
Maria-João Pires is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
JoséDuarte added Portugal

23
374 691
Ekaterina Mechetina is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Pianists in the World
ИльяИванов added

Russia 

24
717 957
Marc-André Hamelin is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Pianists in the World

25
1,234 322
Arcadi Volodos is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Pianists in the World