So my new orchestra’s website says to “come to rehearsals prepared with a set of strings and a mute”. I’ve got the set of strings covered, but I am overwhelmed by the amount of options in the mute department! What type of mute do you think they want me to bring?
There seems to be two types of mute: a practice mute and an orchestral mute. The Tourte mute is an orchestral mute for violas and violins. Superior Violins has the standard practice mute while Shar Music offers the orchestral mute. You can see how to use an orchestral mute in this video.
Having used 1 and 2 hole Torte style mutes, I would say I can’t tell much difference in sound. The single hole ones tend to wiggle around a bit more when they’re “at rest” down by the tailpiece, but it’s usually not a problem.
I would personally advise NOT to get something like the resonans wire mute, though. These plastic and wire mutes work, but the wire scraping up and down over the wrapping by the tailpiece can cause them to unravel!