Everything You Need to Know About Running a Silent Event

A silent event, such as a silent disco, is an event where you have your attendees put on a pair of special noise-canceling headphones.

Then the attendees can tune into one or multiple channels of sound and simultaneously and indirectly combine energies with other attendees.

There is no actual music from a DJ being played, and instead the music is playing in the ears of the attendees. The attendees also can switch between one DJ or speaker (if convention) depending on what they want to hear.

attendees of a silent disco wearing headphones

There are plenty of benefits to hosting and planning a silent event. 

1. Bigger variety of venue choices 

With no music being played, there is no risk of getting a noise ordinance violation if the event is too loud. This allows you to choose any venue for your event or at least have more flexibility.

2. It's easier to communicate with team or guests 

If you are in a loud nightclub and find yourself shouting at the person next to you, this won’t happen at a silent event.

At this event, you can take off your headphones and speak at a normal level. Those with headphones on won’t notice since the music is still going for them. 

3. You're creating a unique experience 

You may be too busy experiencing the event to observe from the sidelines, but it’s fun to watch people dancing and moving along in a quiet room.

Plus it's something different.

4. Limiting distractions

This part of the event won’t be a distraction if there are other things going on at the same time. 

5. You can broadcast different channels and offer more choices for guests

Attendees are able to switch channels and there is the option to listen to more than one DJ mix or speaker at the event.

At a more corporate event, this can be helpful so everyone can understand what is being said in different languages or in the back of the room. 

attendees of a conference wearing headphones

Event Types That Are Great for Silent Events

The most popular event type is a silent disco, but there are other events that could also work as silent events. 

·      Conferences

·      Meetings

·      Team Bonding Events

·      Weddings

·      Outdoor Cinema Events

Any event where you are worried about noise control can be turned into a silent event. 

What’s Different about Planning a Silent Event?

While planning a silent event can be similar to a regular event, there are also some things you need to keep in mind.

1. Your equipment needs will be different

You can’t just use ordinary headphones for your silent event. You should have LED wireless and rechargeable headphones so there is no hassle of having to change the batteries.

The channel of music and volume should also be able to be adjusted through the headphones. It’s also a good idea to have a wireless transmitter to give your guests the different choices.

2. It's best to find people already familiar with working silent events 
Anything can be amplified with a headphone channel so you can technically book any type of artist or talent but it’s helpful to work with people that have a familiarity with silent events.

This also goes for the vendors you are working with. 


3. You'll need a good audio team
When your event is all about the sound coming through the headphones, you want to make sure you have a good audio team. Your team needs to be able to have the wireless transmitter connected to the iPod or laptop of the DJ performing at the event. 

4. Crowd management is a must 
Since no one can hear other people you need to manage the crowd. With this type of event, it’s best to have a single point of entry and a single point of exit.

Some venues and spaces will be more ideal for this, while with others you will have to be more creative. Be sure to keep fire safety codes in mind and don’t put any chains on emergency exits.

If the event already has a single entrance setup, then have in and out queues with some rope stanchions and some tables. If the event is more complex, then you may need to get some barriers in order to control the crowd.

A single point of entry and exit will make it easier to ensure all headphones are returned. 

5. Don't forget about the headphones

The big decision when it comes to the headphones is whether to rent or buy. The cost of a broken or missing headphone will come back to you.

Decide what makes the most sense in terms of guest accountability of the headphones you lend them. If you want to make sure guests give you headphones back at the end, you can collect and hold credit cards or ID in exchange for getting headphones back. 

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