Bands/Musicians The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time  

Ranker Music
52.9k votes 3.4k voters 37.5k views 150 items

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
1,057 375
Sergei Rachmaninoff is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Opera, Art song, Chamber music
2
491 180
Józef Hofmann is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
3
503 190
Ignaz Friedman is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added
4
981 451
Vladimir Horowitz is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Guest added Classical music
5
777 400
Arcadi Volodos is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
sander-dahlberg added Classical music
6
647 400
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Classical music
7
422 242
William Kapell is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added
8
407 244
Wilhelm Backhaus is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Classical music
9
397 238
Alexander Scriabin is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music
10
155 68
Moriz Rosenthal is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music
11
672 457
Mikhail Pletnev is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Classical Music
12
383 242
Artur Schnabel is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Classical music
13
140 60
Solomon Cutner is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added
14
346 220
Rudolf Serkin is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Classical music
15
362 233
Alfred Cortot is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added Classical music
16
280 170
Josef Lhévinne is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music
17
333 211
Walter Gieseking is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music
18
375 267
Anton Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Opera, Chamber music
19
571 431
Grigory Sokolov is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added
20
686 534
Martha Argerich is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Classical music
21
504 382
Ervin Nyiregyházi is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
iub92564 added
22
158 93
Camille Saint-Saëns is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
MarkTaylor1 added Opera, Chamber music, Classical music
23
725 567
Glenn Gould is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
Classical music
24
212 139
Benno Moiseiwitsch is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music
25
189 120
Ferruccio Busoni is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Classical Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Opera, Chamber music, 20th-century classical music