Unsilent Night 2007, A Mobile Ambient Music Public Art Installation by New York City Composer Phil Kline

Unsilent Night is a mobile ambient music public art installation organized by New York City composer Phil Kline, where people walk around the city in a group, each with a boombox or amplified music device that plays a separate track, that combined create the unified sound of Unsilent Night.

Unsilent Night 2007 events are scheduled to take place around the world this Saturday, December 22nd and Unsilent Night in San Francisco will start in Dolores Park at 7pm. Here’s a video I created of last year’s Unsilent Night 2006.

A beautiful, mobile piece of ambient public art, Unsilent Night can be compared to a holiday caroling party — except that participants don’t sing. Instead, each carries an ordinary boombox playing a separate cassette, CD or mp3 that becomes part of the piece. In effect, Kline and his co-performers become single elements in a huge, moving sound system.

Performed within the confines of the city streets, Unsilent Night reverberates off the cars and buildings, resulting in a magnificent, drifting cloud of shimmering, echoing sound. The 43-minute piece includes sounds of chiming bells, choral voices and various electronic effects. (Kline cites Brian Eno and Charles Ives among his influences.)