Sergei Rachmaninoff (Russian, 1873-1943) finalized in 1901 his Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18. It established Rachmaninoff's fame as concert composer and is one of the most popular piano concertos worldwide. It is one of the greatest masterpieces.
Rachmaninoff's 2nd Piano Concerto begins with a driving, very atmospheric melody. It ultimately captures his listener, especially in the second movement where he creates this romantic back and forth between the orchestra and piano. As is typical of his works, the last movement winds up with a pulse-pounding moment of elation.