This year’s PJ Harvey album, The Hope Six Demolition Project, was a collection of songs inspired by world trips (often to disenfranchised communities) that the singer/songwriter made between 2011 and 2014. (Her 2015 book of poetry The Hollow of the Hand always drew from her experiences.) Now, Harvey’s notes and photos from her trip to Kosovo, as well as her poetry and songs, have inspired a new five-part radio “drama,” On Kosovo Field, which will be aired on BBC’s Radio 4 between January 9th and 13th.
Harvey is not helming the project herself; the script was written by acclaimed British playwright Fin Kennedy who visited the territory alongside producer Nadia Molinari to conduct further research. It follows a brother and sister, refugees from Kosovo living in the UK, in the process of rediscovering their family’s troubled past. Kennedy describes the significance of the drama’s format in the BBC’s description of the radio play:
“The ‘play cycle’ as an idea takes its inspiration from the traditional song cycles of the Albania/Kosovo region. By the end of the cycle we come to understand that the siblings are a metaphor for Kosovo itself, the newest country in Europe, poignantly searching for an identity after centuries of conflict.”
Read more about On Kosovo Field via the BBC’s website, and watch PJ Harvey’s video for “The Wheel,” featuring images of her trip to Kosovo, below.