Bands/Musicians The Greatest Pianists of All Time  

Ranker Music
24.3k votes 2.8k voters 26.5k views 125 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
785 118
Art Tatum is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Stride, Jazz

2
761 233
Sergei Rachmaninoff is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Opera, Art song, Chamber music

3
572 182
Józef Hofmann is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

4
684 266
Vladimir Horowitz is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

5
534 216
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
219 125
Artur Schnabel is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

7
351 235
Wilhelm Backhaus is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

8
360 243
William Kapell is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added

9
213 127
Fats Waller is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Tom Islava added Stride, Ragtime, Swing music

10
302 205
Glenn Gould is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

11
195 121
Alfred Cortot is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

12
160 92
Solomon Cutner is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

13
141 75
Robert Casadesus is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

14
238 163
Leopold Godowsky is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

15
125 62
Rudolf Serkin is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Classical music

16
188 123
Walter Gieseking is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

17
280 209
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time

18
334 259
Mikhail Pletnev is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

19
140 81
Byron Janis is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

20
109 53
Julius Katchen is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

21
189 128
Claudio Arrau is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

22
127 71
Dinu Lipatti is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added Classical music

23
193 136
Krystian Zimerman is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

24
266 207
Martha Argerich is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

25
121 70
Radu Lupu is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added Classical music

26
92 45
Samson François is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added

27
146 98
Alicia Delarrocha is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Alicia Delarrocha Classical Music

28
130 87
Edwin Fischer is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

29
189 149
Evgeny Kissin is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

30
116 76
Earl Wild is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

31
133 95
Georges Cziffra is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

32
338 319
Franz Liszt is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Opera, Romantic music, Art song

33
72 39
Oscar Levant is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added

34
66 33
José Iturbi is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
John Jozwiak added Classical music

35
233 213
Arthur Rubinstein is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

36
235 219
Sviatoslav Richter is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Piano, Classical music

37
109 87
Sir Clifford Michael Curzon is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

38
86 63
Denis Matsuev is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Сергей Ильин added

39
121 103
András Schiff is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
markuka85 added Classical music

40
95 74
Marc-André Hamelin is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical Music

41
110 97
Van Cliburn is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

42
127 117
Vladimir Ashkenazy is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

43
117 106
Charles-Valentin Alkan is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

44
91 81
Myra Hess is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

45
82 71
Jorge Bolet is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

46
83 73
Maurizio Pollini is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
ayşe-öktem added

47
134 135
Emil Gilels is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

48
64 55
George Gershwin is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Tom Islava added Opera, Musical theatre, Film score

49
94 93
Sigismond Thalberg is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
Classical music

50
85 85
Daniil Trifonov is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Pianists of All Time
gnicholls added