The most OVERRATED Pianist

Who would you pick?

Well if I’m going to measure hype / acclaim against what I hear, it would have to be YW. At least in certain repertoire, and at least post, I don’t know, maybe 2015? I know XSDC loved her Schumann/Beethoven recital but for me that really pointed up the distinction in hype / merit. Her recent Chopin PC 1 (or 2?) also.

LL & Yundi don’t get quite the acclaim they used to get, AFAICT.

Matsuev would be another pick, maybe before YW. That guy’s a hammer.

Wang has done lots of trash. She’s also done lots of excellent things. I think she’s where she should be.

Agreed on Matsuev, and also that LL maybe isn’t the superstar anymore he was 5-10 years ago.


Trifonov :sunglasses:

Historically also Paderewski, Kissin, Brendel. Hmmm. Sofronitsky.

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Khatia Buniatishvili?

Pozz accurate? She’s ~ok~ at least, and she doesn’t have superstar status. Maybe a bit above.

And I can yield that Wang is pozz a bit above too.

She definitely has superstar status, going by Facebook likes and Youtube views.

Francois maybe? I think he’s fine, but not that fine.

Haskil. Same reasoning.

Lipatti a little bit, though I’ll add an IMO. He was very good, but I think martyrdom maybe took him a few notches above where he would have been otherwise.

I felt the need to check out one of my betes-noires.

I defy anyone who knows this piece to avoid laughing around 3 mins.

Fuck’s sake. All the charm and seductiveness of a robot SS guard.

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Got to the end. It got worse, if anything. I would have walked out. Disgusting :pimp: playing.

At his best he’s a great pianist. It’s hard to say though, because it’s a question of « overrated by whom? ». I think all pianists are overrated by their fanatics, including Sokolov, Wang and Cziffra.

I think Brendel has done some excellent things too. IMO he’s overrated by the masses, underrated by pianophiles.

Ohohoooo here we go:


When you use the term overrated in the context of them rating that pianist far above others?

Cziffra is my favourite pianist but I don’t like him in everything and his repertoire doesn’t cover a fraction of the music I enjoy.

Hamelin could be argued as overrated among pianophiles but if you bear in mind he is a specializer in rare rep - he literally dominates with his recordings of most of those. He has little competition in that rep, true, but there are some really stellar white-hot recordings among them.

I think about overrated here in relation to their public reputation, as it were, as I perceive it. I don’t think either of the ones I’ve brought up are bad pianists (maybe Pad, Pol…), just that their reputation isn’t in proportion to what they’ve done at the piano.

I actually find it easier to make a case for that Hamelin is underrated than that he’s overrated. He does have his limitations, and I think his rep choice was a good move both for him and for us, but he’s one of the great originals of our time and at his best he’s as impressive as any pianist I know. I am absolutely positive he will be remembered and listened to long after his death. And yet he’s never been that self-evident pianist for the main halls in cities - up here in S we (they…) are very conservative, but he’s been invited exactly once. And that was to play the Paganini Rhapsody. Carnegie also came very late, he’s not a regular in Paris, and so on.

…on the other hand, these are the words of a doc fan. When I ran my youtube channel I actually struggled to find things from him I thought were good enough, and among my music friends only two think he’s any good.

But I don’t care. He’s great and it doesn’t matter how he plays. Period. :wink:

You mention his death and this is where the problem lies - as I said in the repertoire he’s played he is dominant partially due to the lack of competition but as time passes - there will be other great Alkan recordings, etc. So will he shine so much given this risk?

His Alkan Concerto is just unsurpassed. absolutely thrilling, but as he ages I do wonder what his legacy will be.

Yes, I think so. IMO he’s not just good in relation to the competition, but in absolute terms, and he has a distinct personality and original playing style. He doesn’t disappear in the noise as it were. I do think that when the Steve & the Chris of 2118 probe historical pianists, Hamelin will be one of the brightest shining stars of our time.

Period. :wink:

Randomly I love Moiseiwtsch playing the Wagner-Pimp Isolde’s Death/repressed orgasm - in a purely unapologetic penizdick way.

Da color dat mofo gets out of da instrument will always captivate da TM more den any Chinese chick pozz

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It depends how you balance it out. I know you judge by the best a pianist has done, so you’d keep her up there. For me the large number of anonymous / styleless performances would bring her down to…regular professional concert pianist level, i.e. still elite, just not the next saviour.

I like da Wang but not in Chopin.