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The Silence at the Song's End

45 minutes
First broadcast:
Wednesday 06 March 2013

After the death of her 23 year old son, Nicholas Heiney, Radio 4 broadcaster Libby Purves discovered, scattered about his room on bits of crumpled paper and post-it-notes, his poems and journals. His life in words.

Getting up at dawn throughout that summer, Libby set about transcribing his writings - 35,000 words - onto her computer. She deliberately chose an unfamiliar font as a way of disciplining herself not to change anything. And every day she would email what she had typed to Heiney's former English tutor, Professor Duncan Wu, at St Catherine's College, Oxford.

What followed was 'The Silence At The Song's End' - written by Nicholas Heiney and adapted for radio by Libby Purves.

Producer: Karen Rose
A Sweet Talk production for BBC Radio 4.


As Herself
Libby Purves
Karen Rose



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