The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music poll: Who were the 10 greatest pianists of all time?

August 7, 2012
4 Comments

By Jacob Stockinger

An interesting and accomplished monthly Australian magazine – Limelight Magazine (below) – is devoted to classical music and the fine arts in the Land Down Under. Limelight recently polled contemporary well-known concert pianists today and asked them to name the Top Ten Pianists of All-Time. But what I do find funny, and even questionable or suspect, is that they all equated the qualifier “Of All Time” with the 20th century. Partisans of Arthur RubinsteinVladimir Horowitz and Rudolf Serkin might also find some grounds for minor disagreement. And feminists will almost certainly object to the sexist list, which completely excludes women, including such talents Guiomar Novaes, Teresa Careno and Martha Argerich (below).

Granted, perhaps that is because we do not possess recordings of certain figures. But you might think that, even without recordings as documents, someone might name, say, Chopin (below top) and Liszt (below bottom) as among the most accomplished pianists of all time.

Some of you might also be a bit disappointed in how such titanic figures as Claudio Arrau (below), Josef Hoffmann and Leopold Godowsky rate in the listing.

Take a look for yourself: http://www.limelightmagazine.com.au/Article/306444,the-10-greatest-pianists-of-all-time.aspx/0

Published since 2003, the Australian magazine itself — given the home country’s geographical location — understandably has a lot to say about the classical music scene in Asia and about less well-known names of performers and compositions. It is worth checking out. It seems to publish a lot of Top Ten lists and features rarely heard performers, groups and compositions.

Here is a link to its home website: www.limelightmagazine.com.au

And be sure to leave your own nominations for the Best Pianists of All Time in the COMMENT section.


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