Tonight is "Unsilent Night," an annual holiday parade in which participants blast compositions by experimental composer Phil Kline on boomboxes through the streets of downtown Manhattan. The participants converged in Washington Square Park where Mr. Kline loaned a limited number of boomboxes as well as cassette tapes and CDs for those who brought their own boomboxes. From Washington Square Park, the participants headed east ending up in Tompkins Square Park. It was noted that there were more people without boomboxes who participated in the parade.
“Unsilent Night was designed in 1992 to withstand the unreliability, playback delay and occasional quavering tones of cassettes, “ said Phil Kline in an interview with the San Francisco Examiner. “About 90 percent of people have CD players now, so I make CDs available as well, but there’s something about the twinkling, hallucinatory effect of a warbling cassette tape that I enjoy.”