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Violist and violist or Violist is the name of a musician , the viola plays (not to be confused with the violinist ).

Since compositional practice in the 19th century often used the viola part in the orchestra as a “filler part”, there were few “real” violists, because this instrument seemed less interesting than the other string instruments, especially since there was relatively little solo literature for this instrument. The viola was mostly played by poorly qualified violinists. The numerous viola jokes arose because of their inability to play this instrument . In the course of music history, the viola parts have also become much more complex and often lost their function as a mere filler part. Today violists specialize in their instrument and are just as well trained as other orchestral musicians.

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Wiktionary: violist  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations