Festival to present 4th annual "Unsilent Night" on Thursday December 9

As part of their holiday tradition, the International Festival of Arts & Ideas will present composer Phil Kline’s “Unsilent Night” on Thursday, December 9, 2010. A “boom box processional” that fills the crisp, winter air with Kline’s symphony for bells, the performance features audience participants carrying boom boxes, each playing one of four musical parts, to create a magical evening of ethereal sound. Kline’s signature composition “Unsilent Night” debuted on the sidewalks of Greenwich Village in 1992 and is now a holiday tradition worldwide from San Francisco to Sydney. “Unsilent Night” made its New Haven debut in December 2007.

Free to the public and great for all ages, “Unsilent Night” will begin at the Yale Bookstore (located at 77 Broadway in New Haven) at 5:30pm, where participants will be able to pick up the music and enjoy refreshments. The processional will step off promptly at 6:15pm, winding its way through the streets of New Haven and across the Green (which will be decorated with the Holiday Tree), and return to the Yale Bookstore for a meet and greet with Phil Kline at 7pm. Individuals are encouraged to bring their own boom box or a music player with speakers that will play a CD or MP3. The Festival will have a limited supply of boom boxes available to participants on a first-come, first-served basis.

As Kline explains, “Unsilent Night is an outdoor, ambient music piece for an infinite number of boom boxes. It’s like a Christmas caroling party except that we don’t sing, but rather carry the music, each of us playing a separate track that is a ‘voice’ in the piece. In effect, we become a city-block-long sound system! I think it succeeds so well because the modest ambition, to have a party, becomes universal so easily at this time of year. It’s dark and cold and everyone is stressed out. And here’s this free, low-key thing that makes the air vibrate in a way that’s wonderful, relaxing and invigorating all at once. It’s been a pleasure to watch it start in New Haven the last few years."

“In keeping with the Festival’s mission of bringing the community together, we are thrilled to bring Phil Kline’s boom box caroling tradition back to New Haven for the fourth time this December,” said Mary Lou Aleskie, Executive Director of the International Festival of Arts & Ideas. “Composer Phil Kline is an innovative musician, who is as comfortable in the rock world as he is in the conservatory,” she said. “We are excited this event has become a holiday tradition here in New Haven, just as it has in New York City and elsewhere around the world.”

The International Festival of Arts & Ideas invites everyone to experience what has been called a “holiday rite” and “a swirling blizzard of sound” by The New York Times, and to meet Phil Kline, described by the Village Voice as the "Avant-Garde Boombox Santa".

People of all ages can participate – no experience is necessary! Call the Festival’s Holiday Hotline at 203.498.3727 or e-mail unsilentnight@artidea.org for more information. Participants who RSVP for the event will be entered to win 2 free tickets to the 2011 Festival.


DATE: Thursday, December 9, 2010

LOCATION: Yale Bookstore, 77 Broadway, New Haven, CT

DOORS OPEN: 5:30pm



INFORMATION: 203.498.3727 or e-mail unsilentnight@artidea.org