Country Music is a dramatic play about love, crime and possibly redemption, with a purity of structure that gives it great emotional force.
The play dips in and out of the life of Jamie Carris over twenty years, showing him meeting with his girlfriend, his half-brother and his daughter. It is also the story of his crime – his flight, his time in prison and his attempt to find his way in the world once he is released. Jamie commits a crime, an act of vengeance which is the terrible pivot of the play’s action, but Stephens focuses not on his violence but on his relationships and his humanity.
Stephens was inspired to write the play after leading theatre workshops in prisons, and his delicacy and empathy are visible in this simple and immensely powerful play.
Country Music premiered at the Royal Court Theatre in 2004.