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May I know whether most pianists wear glasses when playing the piano due to eye strain when reading the piano notes? I don't see any sort of information online regarding my question.

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  • I could tell you that I don't, but I couldn't speak for "most," and I don't see how anyone can. For what purpose are you asking this question? Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 6:07
  • I would like to know in general as this question is regarding my research on pianists whether if its a common thing for them to wear glasses when playing the piano. One of the reasons may be due to eye strain when staring at the piano notes for a prolonged period.
    – newbie
    Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 6:14
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    This is an impossible question to answer. How would anyone know that about every piano player in the world? You’d also need to take into account the fact that a good percentage of people wear glasses or contacts all the time, or need correction for their sight for all reading activities, not just piano playing. Sorry, but I’m voting to close this as subjective and unanswerable Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 6:56
  • The only pianists or keyboardists I recall seeing wearing glasses were home recording people, kids stuck doing student recitals, or one of my piano teachers. I actually don't remember seeing ANY professional concert pianists with glasses.
    – Dekkadeci
    Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 12:05
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because this is unrelated to music. Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 16:10

2 Answers 2

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If you need glasses to read something, then wear them.

Why would you do otherwise? The only thing I can think of that might be the issue is you are asking about reading glasses. Glasses you don't need to wear all the time normally. But the answer still seems the same to me. If you need the reading glasses to read music easily, use them.

Bill Evans, Dave Brubeck, Herbie Hancock, etc. wore glasses.

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    You can get glasses for intermediate distance ranges: I have computer glasses that are single vision between my distance and reading prescriptions. That’d be about the same range as for piano. Elton John’s another pianist well known for wearing glasses.
    – Rob Caplan
    Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 22:06
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I can see no reason not to wear glasses when reading printed music at the piano.

If the pianist is performing a piece by memory, and likes the sensation of being cut off from the environment, then I suppose going glasses-less might be appealing.

Basketball is a reason not to wear glasses. The piano is not.


I have seen conductors become very unhappy when reaching the bifocals stage of life. Bifocals don't work very well when conducting a pit orchestra because of the large vertical span. The conductor has to look so far down, to see the score, and so far up, to see the singers, it's very awkward.

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  • The only pianists or keyboardists I recall seeing wearing glasses were home recording people, kids stuck doing student recitals, or one of my piano teachers. I actually don't remember seeing ANY professional concert pianists with glasses.
    – Dekkadeci
    Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 12:04
  • @Dekkadeci - Oh, are we limiting our interest to the small set of pianists who concertize? And how much performing with printed music do concert pianists do? Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 14:10
  • Touché: I don't recall any concert pianists with sheet music. The only time I recall piano sheet music at a recital is the accompanist pianist with a transcription of the orchestral part of a concerto.
    – Dekkadeci
    Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 18:01
  • @Dekkadeci - Printed music on the stand is used for chamber music in general. But for the most part, the big names are bringing in the big crowds for a concerto with orchestra, and maybe a solo recital, where everything will have been memorized. Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 18:39
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    @Dekkadeci. How about Bill Evans just for starters? Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 19:59

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