Classical The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time  

Ranker Music
23.3k votes 2.2k voters 32.5k views 152 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the greatest classical pianist in history

Classical music forever shaped the future of music. Most of contemporary music has influences from classical music in some way. Becoming a professional pianist is much more than just hitting the right note. It involves comprehensive music theory, having an ear for rhythm, and the passion for music that simply can't be taught.
 
The piano is one of the most powerful instruments in the music world. Classical composers like Bach and Beethoven used the piano to build the parts for all of the other instruments in their symphonies and other works. Who are the greatest classical pianists of all time?
 
This list features the all time greatest classical pianists, ranked by the community's votes and including Aaron Copland, Jacques Abram, Johann Sebastian Bach, Lang Lang, and George Frideric Handel. Vote up the best classical pianists below or add one you think is the greatest who isn't already on the list.
list ordered by

1
689 209
Sergei Rachmaninoff is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Sergei Rachmaninoff Opera, Art song, Chamber music

The Best Classical Pianists in the World The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

2
647 218
Vladimir Horowitz is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Guest added Vladimir Horowitz Classical music

3
439 198
Arcadi Volodos is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
sander-dahlberg added Arcadi Volodos Classical music

4
160 34
Józef Hofmann is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time

5
163 38
Ignaz Friedman is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Ignaz Friedman

6
152 56
William Kapell is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added William Kapell

7
143 62
Alexander Scriabin is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Alexander Scriabin Classical music

8
149 72
Wilhelm Backhaus is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Wilhelm Backhaus Classical music

9
139 66
Artur Schnabel is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Artur Schnabel Classical music

10
125 64
Leopold Godowsky is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Leopold Godowsky Classical music

11
119 59
Walter Gieseking is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Walter Gieseking Classical music

12
358 276
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli Classical music

13
514 414
Franz Liszt is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Franz Liszt Opera, Romantic music, Art song

14
142 87
Vladimir Sofronitsky is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Vladimir Sofronitsky Classical music

15
128 75
Alfred Cortot is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Alfred Cortot Classical music

The Most Famous Classical Guitarists Hottest Music Videos Of All Time

16
392 311
Mikhail Pletnev is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Mikhail Pletnev Classical Music

17
267 202
Ervin Nyiregyházi is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
iub92564 added Ervin Nyiregyházi

18
130 81
Anton Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Anton Rubinstein Opera, Chamber music

19
418 345
Glenn Gould is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Glenn Gould Classical music

20
201 147
Claudio Arrau is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Claudio Arrau Classical music

21
427 358
Krystian Zimerman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Krystian Zimerman Classical music

22
105 62
Béla Bartók is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Béla Bartók Opera, Ballet, Art song

23
188 140
Grigory Sokolov is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Grigory Sokolov

24
157 112
Dinu Lipatti is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
stubb added Dinu Lipatti Classical music

25
358 301
Martha Argerich is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Martha Argerich Classical music

26
108 70
Rudolf Serkin is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Rudolf Serkin Classical music

27
225 182
Sviatoslav Richter is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
sander-dahlberg added Sviatoslav Richter Piano, Classical music

28
281 240
Evgeny Kissin is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Evgeny Kissin Classical Music

29
76 44
Alicia de Larrocha is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Alicia de Larrocha Classical music

The Greatest Classical Guitarists of All Time The Worst Things About Going to Bars in Your 30s

30
59 29
Yefim Bronfman is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Yefim Bronfman

31
69 39
Jorge Bolet is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Jorge Bolet Classical music

32
74 45
Samson François is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Samson François

33
69 40
Daniil Trifonov is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Daniil Trifonov

34
57 28
Josef Lhévinne is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Josef Lhévinne Classical music

35
57 28
Nelson Freire is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Marcos Lopes added Nelson Freire

36
49 20
Edwin Fischer is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Edwin Fischer Classical music

37
87 59
Earl Wild is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Earl Wild Classical music

38
54 26
Ivan Moravec is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Ivan Moravec

39
142 117
Emil Gilels is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Emil Gilels Classical music

40
91 67
Radu Lupu is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Radu Lupu Classical music

41
181 160
Arthur Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
stubb added Arthur Rubinstein Classical music

42
58 34
Sergei Prokofiev is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Sergei Prokofiev Opera, Ballet, Ballet

43
111 92
Georges Cziffra is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Georges Cziffra Classical music

The Hottest Male Classical Musicians The Best Netflix Original Documentary Movies

44
44 24
Benno Moiseiwitsch is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Benno Moiseiwitsch Classical music

45
201 196
Marc-André Hamelin is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Marc-André Hamelin Classical Music

46
163 156
Vladimir Ashkenazy is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Vladimir Ashkenazy Classical music

47
33 15
Charles-Valentin Alkan is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Charles-Valentin Alkan Classical music

48
119 111
Wilhelm Kempff is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Wilhelm Kempff Opera, Classical music

49
34 18
Shura Cherkassky is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Shura Cherkassky Classical music

50
40 25
John Ogdon is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added John Ogdon