If a party takes place in São Paulo and nobody hears anything, is it really happening? The answer in the case of the Nokia Silent Club party at Sonique Bar in Consolação is yes.
Walking into the semi-frequent boogie on Rua Bela Cintra without headphones is like stepping into a muted music video… or maybe a mime disco.
Veering body parts spray colorful blurs, shadows and fragrant bouquets across the dance floor. Some seem to be grooving in unison. Others appear to be marching to a beat of a different drummer.
On a platform overlooking the movement, three DJs study their handiwork and contemplate their next musical selection. Revelers sip cervejas, caipirinhas and other cocktails.
All of your senses seem to be screaming paaaaaaaaaaaarty! Except the sound in Sonique more closely resembles a library. It’s as if your ears—usually veritable Captain Morgans—suddenly turned pious and are behaving like poopers of said paaaaaaaaaaaarty!
What gives? Well, what gives music is a set of Bluetooth Nokia headphones with three frequencies. Each station is pegged to a different DJ, allowing partygoers to select a genre—from electronic and pop to rock and hip-hop—and volume. Speaking through the 200 pairs of personal stereos, the festa feels complete.
Having launched in April, promoters intend to make the Tuesday night surreal experience a monthly occurrence. Sonique is the first and only São Paulo establishment providing the silent social gathering. The concept came to Sampa via Rio de Janeiro from Europe, where baladas caladas are apparently all the rage.
Video: Check out Portuguese-language video of Nokia Silent Club at Sonique Bar (courtesy of Epoca SP magazine)
By 11:30 p.m. last night (doors open at 9 p.m.), the line outside of Sonique extended ten craniums. Inside, a hostess was already filling out a waiting list for earphones. DJs Marcelo Sommer, Caio Gobbi and Maria Prata were crafting the playlists for those in possession of headsets.
As the mood heightened and the drinks (un)enlightened, sound began to return to the noiseless lounge. Packs of people began to sing along with Lady Gaga, Michael Jackson, Prince, Vanilla Ice, Rage Against the Machine, Ivete Sangalo and Parangolé. The smooth operators in the crowd trade jams for conversation (and just imagine being able to talk in a club without shouting).
And your every inkling agrees: paaaaaaaaaaaarty!
Check out additional photos below. Nokia Silent Club is a semi-regular occurrence at Sonique Bar. Check www.soniquebar.com or @nokiabrasil on Twitter to find out future dates. Doors open at 9 p.m. and close at 4 a.m. There is a Rs. 20 minimum.