silent disco
n. A dance party where the music can only be heard through special headphones; a party where each person dances to whatever music is playing on his or her MP3 player.
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As undergraduates at Swansea University prepare for this year's annual summer ball, neighbours might be forgiven for bracing themselves for an aural onslaught.

But this year students are adopting a new approach to reducing late-night noise nuisance — by staging a "silent disco".

After midnight, students who want to continue the party will this year have to hire a set of headphones each, which will broadcast live DJ sets to guests.

But because the music can only be heard on the head-sets, the event should prove to be a quiet affair for the rest of the neighbourhood.
—Nino Williams, “Shhhh! We're having a ball,” South Wales Evening Post, May 08, 2008
Get out your glow sticks, a silent rave is coming to New York this Friday! Apparently, this secret rave movement has been sweeping the country called a "silent rave" or a "silent disco." Party people gather in one spot, fire up their iPods and get their groove on to whatever music they like. Who needs some DJ at Bungalow 8 or outrageous drink prices at Pink Elephant when you get get down in a public space to your own jams for free?
—Gillian Reagan, “Silent Disco Will Be All the Rave on Friday,” New York Observer, April 17, 2008
2001 (earliest)
Revellers are flocking to the world's wackiest nightclub — to dance to music on their personal stereos.

Boss Neil Maguire had the idea after getting fed up with ravers asking DJs for all sorts of tunes.

So he got rid of his music — and told people to bring their own. Now clubbers bop on the dancefloor with their headphones on while the rest of the venue is silent.
—Jerry Lawton, “No noise as clubbers take their walkmans; The silent disco,” Daily Star, April 12, 2001
While other comedians would sneak off for a pint after a show, on this occasion, Noble decided to lead his university audience to a nearby petrol station for a bit of a silent disco.

"One young lass started dancing and then somebody else followed, until we covered the entire forecourt with just everyone dancing," he says. "No one was making a sound."
—Simon Wilson, “Silent riot,” Nottingham Evening Post, February 23, 2001
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