For the second straight year, Hidden City presents composer Phil Kline’s holiday classic “Unsilent Night” next Friday, December 14th. Meet at 6:30PM at Trust, northeast corner of 3rd and Arch Sts; the event will begin promptly at 7PM . The 45-minute walk is part sound sculpture, part parade in which you the audience become the performers. Co-sponsored by Trust and the Old City District, the event is free and open to the public with no advance registration necessary.
Kline wrote “Unsilent Night” specifically to be heard outdoors in the month of December, and takes the form of a street promenade. Everyone who attends will be given one of four tracks of music in the form of a cassette, CD, or Mp3. Together, all four tracks comprise “Unsilent Night.” Carrying boomboxes, or any mobile device that can amplify the music, everyone will simultaneously begin playing the piece. The four different parts of the composition play together as the parade moves through the neighborhood’s intimate streets helping to create the piece’s spectral sound.
If you plan on using an mp3 player with portable speakers, you can download your track here or download the Unsilent Night iPhone/iPod app. You can find very cheap speakers that produce a loud enough sound with the iPhone/iPod online, in stores or even at your local thrift store. (though we certainly won’t turn you away if you just want to play your track from your device’s internal speakers) If you have your own boombox, or plan to get one for the event, we can provide you with a cassette or CD when you arrive.
“Unsilent Night” began in 1992 and has become a huge hit both in America and internationally. This is the tenth year it has been performed in Philadelphia. In past years Unsilent Night has been performed in Rittenhouse Square, with about 100 participants. This year we are excited to present it in Old City, and will be joined by the composer with many boomboxes for participants to carry, though participants are encouraged to bring their own stereo or other music-playing device.
The parade is part of Trust’s effort to create an Old City “Holiday Hub” for the next three weekends as part of “Old City Winter Wonderland.” Events begin tonight with a First Friday preliminary to the huge festivities of the next several weekends. A new art exhibition opens at Trust, with a choral music performance and holiday food and drink. Next weekend will feature a series of events including Unsilent Night as well as gift wrapping, face painting, ornament decorating, holiday food and drink, and open-mic nights.
This event is made possible through the generous support of Trust and the Old City District.