I applaud this and wish I had done the same back in my blues band days in the early 70s.
They may have been doing so before, but I just hadn't noticed.Tweet
I remember the former Principal Cello of The Colorado Symphony, Silver Ainomae, wore earplugs regularly. I don't recall, but I imagine he didn't when he soloed with the orchestra. He was a great player with a really beautiful sound.
For this revised thread, I'll say that I have slightly less hearing loss than some for my 74 years, thanks to Etymotic plugs. I started them early thanks to a hyper-reactive left ear. One or two of my young colleagues use them; the others probably should, too. My viola give out nearly 100dB measured just near my left ear, for several hours at a time..
Also, I play viola just in front of the trombones and trumpets...
I have no idea whether playing without ear plugs most of my 84 playing years is responsible for my condition or not. My paternal grandfather wore hearing aids from his 60s on and he never played an instrument or attended concerts. But he did give me my first violin for my 4th birthday.
Now that the sensory symptom has mostly gone away, I wear earplugs only some of the time, depending on the repertoire being played. I didn't for the concert I just played today, with everything on the program scored for chamber orchestra. But for the previous two programs (Prokofiev and Shostakovich symphonies respectively), I used the earplugs.
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