Bands/Musicians The Greatest Pianists of All Time  

Ranker Music
26.3k votes 3k voters 28.2k views 127 items

List Rules The best piano players in history. Vote up the best musicians who play the piano.

The piano is one of the most famous instruments in the entire world. Almost every composition from some of the greatest composers in early classical music featured this powerful instrument to strike the perfect chords. The piano is extremely versatile and unlike the guitar, cello, or violin the strings on the piano are located inside and played with the keys. Many musicians have some knowledge of the piano, even if it isn't their primary instrument. But who are the greatest pianists of all time?
 
Classical and Baroque periods of music history definitely increased the popularity of the piano and almost every genre of music in today’s culture also uses it! It’s no wonder that mastering the art of playing the piano is such a desirable goal. It is also an instrument that once learned, makes it easier to learn other instruments and is popular among young music students.
 
This list features the all time greatest piano players including, Frédéric Chopin, Franz Liszt, and Sergei Rachmaninoff. Vote up the best pianists below and see where the musicians you think are the greatest of all time rank!
list ordered by

1
840 141
Art Tatum is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Stride, Jazz

2
813 265
Sergei Rachmaninoff is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Opera, Art song, Chamber music

3
612 195
Józef Hofmann is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

4
728 280
Vladimir Horowitz is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

5
570 230
Oscar Peterson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Bradley Scroggs added Third stream, Hard bop, Jazz

6
370 256
Wilhelm Backhaus is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

7
152 71
Rudolf Serkin is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Classical music

8
378 265
William Kapell is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added

9
238 146
Artur Schnabel is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

10
183 102
Solomon Cutner is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

11
163 86
Robert Casadesus is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

12
134 62
Julius Katchen is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

13
322 234
Glenn Gould is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

14
212 137
Alfred Cortot is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

15
162 93
Byron Janis is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

16
209 137
Walter Gieseking is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

17
223 151
Fats Waller is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Tom Islava added Stride, Ragtime, Swing music

18
302 224
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time

19
353 272
Mikhail Pletnev is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

20
115 53
Samson François is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added

21
253 181
Leopold Godowsky is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

22
145 82
Radu Lupu is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music

23
148 85
Dinu Lipatti is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added Classical music

24
170 107
Alicia Delarrocha is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Alicia Delarrocha Classical Music

25
291 229
Martha Argerich is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

26
207 149
Claudio Arrau is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

27
96 44
Oscar Levant is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added

28
150 98
Edwin Fischer is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

29
209 159
Krystian Zimerman is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

30
134 89
Earl Wild is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

31
86 41
José Iturbi is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added Classical music

32
210 167
Evgeny Kissin is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

33
149 113
Georges Cziffra is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

34
109 72
Denis Matsuev is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Сергей Ильин added

35
118 82
Marc-André Hamelin is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

36
144 113
András Schiff is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Classical music

37
356 342
Franz Liszt is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Opera, Romantic music, Art song

38
126 97
Sir Clifford Michael Curzon is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

39
249 237
Arthur Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

40
249 242
Sviatoslav Richter is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Piano, Classical music

41
143 129
Vladimir Ashkenazy is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

42
125 112
Van Cliburn is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

43
128 118
Charles-Valentin Alkan is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

44
145 140
Emil Gilels is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

45
90 77
Maurizio Pollini is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added

46
86 74
Jorge Bolet is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

47
93 85
Myra Hess is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

48
40 21
Thelonious Monk is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
DaleMiller added Stride, Cool jazz, Hard bop

49
329 377
Frédéric Chopin is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Romantic music, Art song, Classical music

50
716 854
Fazıl Say is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
serhanacikalin added Classical music, Contemporary classical music