There is no music, yet people are dancing, some in sync and others not, their headphones lit up red or purple, blue or yellow, as they tune in to any of four songs being played simultaneously by the deejay.
Two people begin the familiar steps of the electric slide, and some guests who were grinding to hip-hop or spinning to disco poke a button on their headset and join the line. Some dance alone, looking down at the lights of the city or the reflection of the moon in the rooftop pool. Some slip off their headphones and hold a conversation without shouting.
It’s silent disco, here on the rooftop of The Embassy Row Hotel in Dupont Circle, a fashionable residential district long a bastion for gay culture and people looking for the cool and funky. The funkiness has given way to gentrification, and now 14th Street, which spokes off the Circle, is known as Restaurant Row, with 60 or more spots serving a panoply of treats that reflect the neighborhood’s cultural mix.