Musicians' Glasses

  • Global Moderator

    Ok, as a background, you should know that I have had cataract operations on both eyes in 2014 and since then, my eyes can't change focus any more. Since then, I've had to work with four different pairs of glasses - one for reading closely, one for music reading, one for mid-range seeing (normal distances within the house) and one for outdoors and driving. Bit of a hassle carrying all that stuff around; and when playing music, I could only focus on the sheet music; the conductor was a dim figure somewhere in the distance.
    A friend of mine is both a cornet and double bass player and an optician. She has now developed special musicians's glasses that are in effect six-strength varifocals... just got mine, and I am amazed. I can sit at my computer and write this, seeing a clear image of the screen, and I can look up and see the horrible amount of washing-up I still have to do, sharp as anything, in seven feet distance, and I can look out of the window and see clearly what the builders are doing in the yard, at 35 feet distance. And I have a sharp image of the house at the end of the street...
    It's a fairly cheap process, considering a consultation will take one full day to adjust the focals to your special needs, and it can't be done but in Yorkshire. But it really is worth it.

    The Magic Woman who does this?

    Sheryl Doe
    Allegro Opticals
    1-3 Station Street
    Meltham, West Yorkshire HD9 5NX

  • I wish she lived in my little corner of the world.

  • I used a special bifocal lens that allowed me to use the custom lower lens to focus on the music (at the music's special distance), and with the upper lens, to concentrate on the conductor.

    If I was conducting, I used a different set of glasses that allowed me to read scores with the lower lens and an upper lens to focus on the orchestra, itself.

    Neither set of glasses served as all-purpose lenses. For general use, I used conventional tri-focals.

  • Global Moderator

    @GeorgeB You might ask her nicely whether she could do something for you - she usually can.

  • I just got a new set of playing glasses now in the works. I should have them early next week, hopefully in time to play at our next practice session. But this gal of yours sounds really special.

  • My optometrist has created lenses that my left eye is corrected to see close distances, my right far distances. I believe it is called monocular vision contact lenses. This works VERY WELL if I skew my stand to rotate at 45 degrees NW relative to my stance. My left eye sees the left written notes and my right the further right written notes and it is amazing that there is no blur in the transition across the page in so doing.

  • @Dr-GO

    My “regular” glasses are like that, but are set up for more medium distance in one lens, long distance in the other. I can still read without glasses, but had trouble with reading music at music stand distance, especially in low light situations. I measured what that distance typically is and went to my optometrist with glasses for that purpose in mind. I leave them in my case, and just switch them with my regular glasses before I sit down to play or practice. Fantastic!

  • Costco "office glasses" work great for me. They are "blended bifocals" with middle-distance prescription uppers and reading-distance prescription lowers.

  • Global Moderator

    OK guys, last night was a premiere for my new glasses. First Big Band Rehearsal after Corona lockdown ( Drove there with my musicians' glasses on my nose - no problem. Went in, did not stumble on the staircase (rehearsal room on third floor, meaning 75 steps up). Set up my stuff after compulsory hand disinfection, and went on to play. No problem at all - could see everything - music sharp, band leader sharp, opposite wall sharp. After rehearsal, packed up and drove home, still with the same glasses. AMAZING.

  • Great, Barliman!

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