Vote for your favourite living classical artist in The uDiscover Classical 100!

Vote for your favourite living classical artist in The uDiscover Classical 100!


Dolly Bagnall

November 23, 2020

uDiscover Classical presents the 100 best-selling living classical artists from around the world, and now they want to hear from you! Vote for your favourite artist and you’ll be entered into a prize draw to win vouchers for the uDiscover Music Store. Vote now (link to landing page – to have your say in The uDiscover Classical 100.

The chart will be revealed in February 2021!


  • John Borstlap says:

    “If it is art, it is not for all, and if it is for all, it is not art.” Schoenberg

    • RW2013 says:

      “If you celebrate it, it’s art, if you don’t, it isn’t.” Cage

      • John Borstlap says:

        “If you think the emperor’s peach can also be eaten by his subjects, you may need some lessons in my studio.” Confusius

        “Unlucky is he, whose mind is always empty, for the wind blows right through it and tells him what he has been missing.” To-Fu (9th century AD)

      • Sue Sonata Form says:

        Oh, so diversity and cultural enrichment are both art!! Who’d have thought?

    • Brettermeier says:

      “When nine hundred years old you reach, look as good you will not.” Yoda

    • Nijinsky says:

      I was going to vote for Donald Duck, but that would be a dead give away, since everyone would think I’m referring to you-know-who having written yet another brass anthem predominating muted trumpets this time: “Ru-yeah, tuh tehyut…..”

      But I think we’ve had enough of those: (dead give-aways)…

  • We privatize your value says:

    Okay, so we can vote for Alfred Brendel (born 1931), but not for Gundula Janowitz (born 1937)?

    • John Borstlap says:

      No, not because of the date, but because of Liszt’s late piano piece ‘La Lugubre Gundula’ where he wrongly predicted the threat of conservative singers to the repertoire.

      • We privatize your value says:

        Whereas Clive Donner made the film “Alfred the Great” in 1969, starring David Hemmings, who had sung the premier of “The Turn of the Screw”…
        Still, I don’t get it. If they include long-retired artists, why Brendel, but not Janowitz? She sang with Klemperer, Karajan, Bernstein, and Jochum, you know!

  • Petros Linardos says:

    The list includes some of the greatest living artists. The poster includes the most hyped ones, including one who does not meet basic conservatory standards. A sign of the times.

    • Occamsrazor says:

      My favorite living musicians are Idil Biret, Katsaris, Hamelin, Pogorelic and Sokolov. Matsuev and Lang Lang are also my favorite because their existence is an indictment of how far the classical standards have been eroded already.

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      Andrea Bocelli? He has a lovely voice but doesn’t make the cut in this category.

  • Smiling Larry says:

    How silly. On this list there is exactly ONE clarinetist to choose from, and it’s not the one I would choose. This is like Henry Ford’s remark about you getting to choose the color of your Model T: “‘Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants, so long as it is black.'”

  • The View from America says:

    Classical music meets the high school popularity contest. Brilliant.

  • Peter says:

    What on earth sort of shortlist of living composers is that? Crazy… Basically, as far as I can tell, all composers who have released discs on Universal/DG. Why not be more honest about the list? For those who haven’t seen, the choice is: Olafur Arnalds; Joep Beving; Ludovico Einaudi; Alexis Ffrench; Joe Hisaishi; Karl Jenkins; Max Richter; Alexandra Streliski; John Williams; Yiruma; Hans Zimmer. That’s your lot…

  • The list is stupid but I vote Chailly and I know he will not win

  • Mirel Iancovici says:

    André Rieu among such distinguished violinists ? What a shame !!

  • Ed says:

    Classical Music Circus.

  • christopher storey says:

    They missed the most important one : ” None of These “

  • Topo says:

    Eigentlich eine komercielles Trauerspiel

  • V.Lind says:

    Look, folks, they ain’t making any secret of it: “uDiscover Classical presents the 100 best-selling living classical artists from around the world…”

    Best-selling. Be lucky so many respectable names are actually included (impressed to see Hélène Grimaud there).

  • Anon says:

    Just for laughs, I voted for Marin and anyone running unopposed in a category. Take that YoYo Ma!

  • Mock Mahler says:

    I can’t decide between the cellist called 2Cellos and the other cellist called Piano Guys.

  • I have the best tastes says:

    I voted Barenboim, Rattle, Thielemann, Jansen, Lang.

  • S. Cluscic says:

    Why are you sharing Universal music propaganda, Mr. Lebrecht?
    Udiscover music is a website fully owned and controlled by Universal Music, which can be easily seen by the selection of artist – but proof is on udiscover site imprint on German version of website.
    Hope they payed you well!

  • Sue Sonata Form says:

    I notice Stephen Kovacevich was absent from the list. I would have easily voted for him.

  • Amos says:

    In too many ways the expression “the good old days” were clearly not. One notable exception is classical music. A similar list from 1950, to pick one year arbitrarily, would put this one to shame in every category.

  • Steve says:

    Well, I won’t be accepting the result in any case. It is clear that the election is rigged and there will be widespread fraudulent voting.

  • Gustavo says:

    Where’s the down-vote button?

  • John Borstlap says:

    It is to be hoped that in postcorona times, this kind of flimsy nonsense will disappear.

  • Gustavo says:

    A classic lose-lose situation.

    If I were Bernard Haitink, I wouldn’t feel insulted by being put on a list of “favourite living artists” after retirement.


  • George says:

    Why all these negative comments?
    These are the 100 Best Selling Classical Artists – whether we like it or not. If Janowitz is not on the list, that’s because she sold less. It’s not about the best artists of all times because that choice always depends on one’s personal taste.

    • We privatize your value says:

      I am sure that Brendel didn’t sell that much, either. In the 1970s, his rivals were named Richter, Gilels, Gould… And in the 1980s – Pollini, Perahia… Brendel was never peerless, never unrivalled.

      • Occamsrazor says:

        I remember as a kid seeing occasional strange characters fishing in Soviet polluted city rivers almost completely devoid of life, dressed poorly, waiting for hours to catch a single 4 inch long fish soaked in heavy oil leaking from cargo ships. All of them without exception looked like Brendel. They would catch no more than 1-2 every other day, pack their equipment and leave. If you asked those Brendels what they intended to do with their catch, they would silently look at you with those bottomless fishy eyes and you knew that some people are as good at keeping secrets as any fish.

        • Tom Melody says:

          Makes me think of the strange look I got from Brendel when I went backstage to get an autograph after a Carnegie Hall recital. Or maybe I just looked like someone to whom he owed money.

    • Pedro says:

      From Universal only.

  • IP says:

    Most of the exhibits seem to be products, not musicians, and of those who are musicians some are dead or retired. But it is always interesting to see David Garrett’s new tattoos.

  • MWnyc says:

    I suspect these are the 100 best-selling living classical artists in the Idagio catalogue, not the 100 best-selling generally. Dame Emma Kirkby is conspicuously missing (she should qualify on the strength of the Hildegard record “A Feather on the Breath of God” alone, let alone the rest of her discography), as is Anonymous4 (I’m not sure if their total sales broke 2 million, but they broke 1 million quite a few years ago).

    • Nick2 says:

      Seems you suspect wrongly. The headline in SD is also incorrect. The link makes it clear the voting is for your FAVOURITE LIVING classical artist. Gundula Janowitz mentioned by another poster Is still alive as far as I know. She will certainly have sold a great many more discs than quite a few on these stupid lists.

      • MWnyc says:

        Yes, you are supposed to vote for your FAVOURITE LIVING artist from among those listed, the “uDiscover Classical 100”. (There seems to have been a branding change from Idagio since Norman first posted this.)

        Click on the button that says “About the uDiscover Classical 100” and it says, “The shortlist of 100 artists was compiled based on global sales data and is made up of some of the biggest names in classical music.”

        And all 100 of them seem to be Universal Classics artists. That would make sense for them from a marketing standpoint; it would also make sense (to them) not to tell us in so many words that non-Universal artists aren’t included.

        So I don’t see how I “suspect wrong.”

        It does seem odd that Janowitz isn’t on the list, but she is long retired, and I notice that almost everyone on the list is still working at least a bit (the only exception perhaps being Brendel).

  • Gaffney Feskoe says:

    Under the category for conductors Herbert Blomstedt appears to be missing.

  • George says:

    Would have thought Zubin Mehta among the best-selling as well.

  • Microview says:

    Do we have to see Lang Lang looking thoughtful (!) every time we visit the Slipped Disc website?

  • Occamsrazor says:

    All my favorite musicians are dead. We have seen lots of dead people voting lately so in the spirit of the times I’m voting for Rachmaninov and try to prove to me that he is no longer alive.

  • Dijon says:

    As my previous post hasn’t appeared yet, here’s another: “this, like most things in the classical music press these days, is absolute b*****ks”

  • JOLOL says:

    Another Universal Music (co)venture half-hiding in plain sight. From some of the same folks who brought you the Sinfini website and the Classic FM-branded Composed app, and who doubtless can this too, in about 2 years max. Norm’s regular scepticism is absent…Is this post a paid plug one wonders innocently?

  • Nick2 says:

    Any list of pianists that does not include Stephen Hough is a joke!

  • Old Man in the Midwest says:

    I’m voting for the pianist in her lingerie.
    Can’t remember her name but y’all know who I mean.
    Art comes in many forms.

  • Tamino says:

    Don‘t vote!
    Let these corporate evils do their own market research and pay for it!
    Don‘t let them utilize you like a cheap turkey on Thanksgiving.

    And how primitive is the question in the first place anyway.

  • Krista says:

    4 1 am devoted.

  • GeoffB says:

    Vladimir Ashkenazy