Horowitz's most memorable performance of Rach's 3rd (in my opinion): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5mxU...eature=related
I soiled myself when he finished that performance. As I listened to it I thought of one section, 'well that's the best damn music I've ever heard". And then he continued to do that again and again. It was ridiculous, so many glorious moments in it, until the whole thing sounded glorious. He played each section as if it summed up his entire life, and Rachmaninov's life also.

Michaelangeli plays Bach/Busoni Ciaconna:

first half - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmsurCyexVs
second half - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmOs7b4ADLQ
This performance is the epitomy of sensitive interpretation. And he did this at the age of 27, of all times. It is the most subtle, sonorous performance you can possibly find of the piece.

And the top of the insurmountable mountain comes into view. Sofrinitsky's most valuable pearl of a performance, and it wasn't even amongst the latest of Scriabin's works (Poem Tragique): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e76oUfPErCk

I had the same feeling I had with Horowitz's Rach 3rd performance, except I felt it right from the beginning, and it didn't let up until he drew his hands away from the keyboard. It didn't sound like he was using an instrument. It certainly didn't sound like he was using his hands, or that he was doing anything at all. It just sounded like he was thinking.