Imaginary Landscape #6

Scanning through Facebook stories in one window on my computer, scrolling down Instagram posts in another, my phone on my desk playing all Instagram stories, all being recorded at the same time – my only active involvement was being able to control the speed of my Instagram scrolling.

For Alan Turing

CLICK HERE FOR
FULL PERFORMANCE!


[made from a thousand Alan Turing heads]
during movement I

CLICK HERE FOR
FULL PERFORMANCE!

In 2011 Matthew Lee Knowles (b.1985) wrote a substantial composition for piano to celebrate his hero.  The piece which can last up to eight hours is called FOR ALAN TURING + was premiered in part at Turing’s centenary celebration at Cambridge University in 2012 + the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in 2011.   In that Cambridge event, someone who had known Turing said “when I listen to your music I can hear Turing speak.” On Wednesday 17th February pianist Kate Ledger performed this piece in full, calling on an endurance simply not required for most music [click here to see how Kate approached this piece]   Kate has since written about the experience on her website which can be found here.   This performance was reviewed by James McIlwrath in the academic journal Tempo.

during movement II
from 2012
Page 470 of The Turing Guide in a chapter called Turing’s Legacy

February was LGBT History Month, so the right time for this performance. Turing suffered for being gay, he was found guilty of gross indecency + underwent horrific hormonal castration.   This composition is a time + place to think not only of Turing’s suffering but of the 50,000 other men who went through this same experience, which often ended in suicide. I am gay + 35 years old – Turing was convicted at 39 + dead at 41, so this cuts deeper with me now than when I wrote it aged 25.

during movement III

It is also a place to reflect upon the incredible significance of Turing, his legendary contributions to mathematics + computing as well as his well known vital role in the codebreaking effort of WWII (still an official secret when he died)  

[part six, recorded at GSMD, 2011]

The slow, gradual delicate placement of notes + chords in this piece is appropriate for the nameless strangeness we find ourselves in; watching a single person call upon their reserves of determination, authenticity, musicality + stamina for a third of a day, without food or rest + very little water is as much a thing to be in awe of as to connect with on a direct one-to-one human level.         

during movement IV

There is no ticket price for this event, so both Kate + Matthew would love for listeners to make a contribution to a charity of their choice, even a small donation is a reminder to charities that they are not forgotten + that our hearts are with them.

Alan Turing Memorial Sculpture in Manchester
photograph by Gary Fisher, 16th February 2021
during movement V
score: page 1

score: page 2

score: page 3

score: page 4
during movement VI
[explanatory key to interpreting the score, made by Kate’s daughter]
Alan Turing mural, Manchester
photo by Gary Fisher 19th February 2021
Kate’s piano preparation I
Kate’s piano preparation II
Kate’s piano preparation III
Kate’s piano preparation IV
Kate’s piano preparation V

Free Lyrics Resource

A resource of seventy-eight original texts potentially for songs, operas, song cycles, spoken word pieces, titles, musical theatre, a starting point for a composition, painting or event. I am creating this modest hoard of words simply because I enjoy writing and it gives me immense pleasure to spark inspiration in someone, so if this happens with you I would love to know. As a composer, text has been at the beginning of almost everything I have ever done, overtly or otherwise: it can make for an intoxicating insight. I am not precious about these fragments and make no claim for their quality, most of these have not been developed or thought about for too long (I generally write them in my head whilst walking) you can use them freely, edit them, chop them up and combine them in any way. I would also be happy to develop anything further if anyone asks me to. In my head some of the very short ones would be effective when repeated many times, however that’s just my taste; a short sentence can be presented in a powerful punch or spread across an evening. Also, a one-hundred year opera doesn’t necessarily need a libretto longer than a single word and a hundred word text can be over in a single minute. I may update this regularly or never again. Talk to me at www.twitter.com/MatLeeKnowles


I’m mad about the thing you did,
Even more you kept it hidden,
Who are you trying to kid?
When you’re gone for good, good riddance!


Bacon, runny eggs and ketchup,
Fat audible sausages: tabled.


In the bakery the baker becomes awakery,
With care, the cake is eaten in a bakery.


Don’t fret, don’t pick at it,
Don’t rip it, don’t lick it,
Don’t become bored or set the bar too high
Don’t peg it but pick it up if you drop it.


Or… gas? Hmm…
Oar, Gaz! Um…
Whore! Gaza? Zoom!
Ore gah! Some.


Ode to those of us getting dimmer
Getting fatter getting dinner.


More money than sense
Full of honey and hence
He’s over that fence
Now his life can commence


The robin red of breast,
Went robbing paste of Crest.
Electrocuted pigeons,
Cluttering up the guttering.


Seagulls and buoys
Come out to play
Come out to pay
Come out and play
Seagulls and buoys
Come out to play
And they all fall drown.


A felled man,
A joined cage
An early brownie,
A religious wolf.


Hi, happy yellow finches and potato fishnets
Hi, scandalous scandal salads and scarlet sapphire sundials
Hi, contented bloated bullfrogs, you cattle of fish,
Hi, gullible seagulls, lounging in my soap dish.


Dolly Part-on, Dolly Part-off.
Polly Dark-in, Polly Dark-out.


Swings and roundabouts,
Shits and giggles
Something thereabouts,
She shakes in wiggles.


All my teeth just fell out,
Into an orchestral ashtray.


If you drop a letter on the ground
Then said letter becomes litter,
The latter literally
Lateral.


Touched and touching, touched and touching.
Touched and touching, touched and touching.
Touched and touching, touched and touching.


Wats of vater falling from thine eyes,
Slipping from the cortal moil,
Jig bugs full from momma’s cries,
They want to do us into the sound groil.


They came for the coming
And I said nothing
They came forthcoming
I held my speaking
They came again and again I did not say something
They came forth a fourth time coming
I told them anything


Customer groans,
Quaintly preaches,
Convenient fog from the east,
Nationalists appear to cheer.

Authority faintly applied,
The taxis predict to provide
A choice of innovation,
We agree to ice-tap the mail.

Primary manufacturing of hot
Liberals reasoning to coincide
With lippy concession lost
To a straight amused host.


Breasts for body art
Tit for tat
Four breasts is body art
Tits go tat
A single breast is body art
That’s a tit


Phase a phosphorus phrase for us, faze us please,
As we piss through the eye of a needle in a haystack.
My anal sis is versatile,
Her analysis is averse to tiles.


Don’t be thick and go ‘n’ lick
A trail left by a snail,
Even if, it gives a whiff
of custard cut with mustard,
Even when the snail pens
A note laid down with a slimy coat
A track leaked from a small gross crack
That warns of things to come,
That we’ll mourn this snail’s bum.


Newton’s straw
Will suck up a
Neutron star
Which will fuck up
Newton and his straw
The neutron star will be fine


She strops during sports
She spots wearing shorts
She shops failing ports
She swaps gender on transport


Amanda’s a man and a dad, Adam
Adam is sad and Dan is mad,
Amanda and Sam and Dan and Adam,
Dana, Mandy, Andy and Aman,
Dance and dance and dance.


Sir, your loins stink and shake,
Enjoy your sirloin of pink steak.


Illiterate
Ill lit is her hate
Her hate is ill lit
At any rate, we ate.


Playing backgammon on the top of a pig,
He questions his life choices.


A tender resonance
Of a murky meditation
A bittersweet occurrence
Of a failed determination
A tainted tremulousness
Of a dust-bitten hibernation
An experimental dissonance
From an ejaculatory lacrimation


What does it pay a man
To pay a woman
To roam and plan
To spay a Roman
Who says “whoa man!”


A, so you keep naked
B, I’m not what plays
C, so see them flick
D, we fly high clown
E, yo! Why fuck round?

F, of cow, rope stand
G, lo! Thy will rolls
H, ow! Rot, damn, balls!
I, am the huge mouse

J, as the wall bangs
K, to row down river
L, in God, they trust
M, my fox, fuck Frank
N, ah! Fie! Hunt cunts
O! by far, barf bones

P, up dog, down whale
Q, hi Liz, away Nigel!
R, Jo, jam, jump, James
S, so sew slew slows
T, go lop legs, sever
U, us, you, them, awake

V, za, yup, sick, total
W, op, chi, pray, beat
X, ok, now back drown
Y, ug, kip, bone heads
Z, oi! Hop that along!


Sugary buggery
Was it her peas or his peas
The result was the same
In their shame snuggery: herpes.


The villain collects scabs from the bodies of children,
The abcesses and distresses he compresses to excesses,
He addresses his successes and depresses coalesces,
Until he holds his final meal, a stinky stinking burger.


Banana skin for tea,
Banana goes into a bin.
Well, I just kicked a puppy into a tree,
Because I thought it was a kitten.


Do you remember that night
When we sat on the tower?
Settling setting the tower aflame
Watching the tower go up in lights?
That tower was burned in our name
We sat on the tower glowing
It licked at our feet as we turned to flame.
It reached up to our nose
Consumed our feet and went through us unopposed.


Gherkin thong, gherkin thong,
This is my song, this is my song.

Sandal tomato vines,
These are my rhymes, these are my rhymes.

Polished with a fine cognac,
This is my track, this is my track.

Check out my earring prunes,
These are my tunes, my tunes.


You may think you have no restraint,
That thing you think simply cannot wait,
But before you wallow in that torment,
Consider you might just be living in the moment.


A sly slum asylum
An asylum slum
In slumber on lumber
Doing a number on the lumbar
Some bar set on a low spike
As they lie and lie alike


Artistic sticks
Problem blemishes
Political calories
To afford the ordinary


A musician called Ian,
Was placated by Kate
And unfortunately by Nate
Then went to live in America, with Erica.


I paid alimony to a pony
I paid her £25
Her name is Ally
She holds my money
Still she always moans


It’s rather out there,
So rat her out there.
Our wrath does sprout there,
So wrap his snout there.


Insisting on the interesting
Intersecting the intention
Inititating the interpolating
Inculcating the irritation


Verdi and Monteverdi
One a chauffeur,
the other in faux fur.


Thy will always towers
Towards western apathy, towering
Tremendously, waning a tad,
This was actually tiring,
That which absolutely trills
The worldly aria, thrills
Tunesmiths working at twilight


Tune sings that broad
Tune girls that broke
Your heart sing sings
That think very terms
Time think here other
What would make never
That local even about
They break down their
Find there many think
Have music form which
Feel about with young
Were those such thing

Anyway Ländler
Europe working
They’ve article
Berlin started
Jewish culture
Ethnic culture
People baloney
There’s nothing

Gorgeous hillbilly
Tyrolean hillbilly
Consider primitive
Cultures breakdown
Question something


Abs tracked in the abstract,
I fed, fled then got flayed
I said, sled then was slayed,
As Russell wrestled on the trestle table.


Open that bottle of bubbly, lovely jubbly
If the bubbly bubbles don’t shoot out with a popping whoosh
The champagne doesn’t see you as much of a threat
And you probably don’t deserve or want it bad enough


Seahorses see horses
Hell’s bells hear paradise’s pair of dice,
Clinking and tapping
Swimming and clapping


We cauterise the wound
They caught our eyes too soon
We cauterise the wound
They caught their eyes in the reflection of the heated spoon
We cauterise the wound
He used to think himself immune
We cauterise the wound
It strikes like a blunt harpoon
We cauterise the wound
His mind a savage typhoon


I got hand rash
But I got it with panache


The thriller fills her with fear,
Of skateboarding and sadomasochism.


Death of wife,
Breath of life.
Birth of son,
Mirth in run.
Trust of daughter,
We rust in water.


I invested a vested interest in an interested investor,
An inventor of intense intent who invented in tents.


Anything I do makes me a

Cheater, I can’t win unless I
Really try to be very small and
Occasionally bite people when they try to
Squash me or
Squish me or just generally give me

Trouble, so I tend to become
Incandescent with rage, until I
Crack and go on my
Killing spree


I want to let me hare down here
and
design a designer deer sign


I’m just a pickle ho,
Who plays the piccolo.
I’m just a troubled case,
Who plays the double bass.


A coda coder In Akoda,
Sitting colder in a Skoda.


Arranging an autopsy,
Crying out a cold top C.


Raising the dead.
Erasing the dead.
Bruising the dead.
Braising the dead.
Abrasing the dead.
Appraising the dead.


North – east – northeast – north-northeast
North – west – northwest – north-northwest
South – east – southeast – south-southeast
South – west – southwest – south-southwest


Projects that never happened,
Pieces that were never written,
Dangers that were easily swallowed,
Hands that were never washed.
People who remained in shadow,
Ideas lost in tears,
From friendships to fiendships.


Free and so I am
I am far more now if I
Could tell you if I cry
Over him as you
Give for it I do


It’s a long time since I had lunch with the girls,
I need a poo so are you taking a day off?

scream scream scream scream scream scream scream

Momma, I need to check my eyelashes,

late late late late late late

Fifteen dollars, forty-five pounds,
I was trying that,

work work work work work work work

Taking fridays just won’t let me count
The wind blowing through the trees.


Sag
Sage
Sausage
Sausageless
Sausagelessness
Sausagelessnesses


Looking both ways, regardless,
Not using “irregardless”.
Finding beauty in the last place,
Complex splatterings of pigeon shit.
Walking through a life altering thunderstorm,
Letting people change.


Self-deprecating, self-defecating,
Self-defeating, self-defecting.
This is my chance to run!
To run to the chocolate mountain!


I do it to
His fat rat but not
Very well, from time, make time, they
Never print quite right, quick, quack.


Me? Me! Me… Me!! Me?! Me!? Me!?! Me!!? Me??!
You? You! You… You!! You?! You!? You!?! You!!? You??!
Us??? US?! Us…? Us….?? us…..??? Us……????


Yes I’m gay, I’m gay, yes, I’m gay, yes, gay, I am gay,
So I’m gay and I am gay and yes I am gay,
Gay gay gay, I’m gay, so I’m gay and yes and yes, so gay.
Gay, so? Yes, yes, yes! Gay, I am gay, gay am I, so gay.


Poo on my toe and eat a potato
Poo on my toes and eat potatoes
There’s poo on my toe and I like potatoes
Some poo on my toes, I think it used to be toast.


A you’re the antichrist
B you’re a bloody bitch
C you’re a cunting crazy cock
D you’re the devil man
E you’re egg shaped evil
F you’re a fucking freak
G you’re grandma’s gunt
H you’re the host of hellfire
I still like you though
J you’re a jaded jerkoff
K you’re the king of kink
L you’re a lousy lay
M you’re a manky mouse
N you’re an N-bomb nun
O you’re only okay
P you’re piss in a priest’s pericardium
Q you’re the queen of queer quickies
R you’re really rather rough
S you’re a slaughter stage
T you’re a titanic tit twat
U at least you are you
V you’re a vacant valueless vagina
W you’re a wanker, you’re a wanker: wanker
X you’re an excreted exhumation
Y are you?
Z you’re banned from all zoos


I call it the butterfly park because it’s a park
And there are lots of butterflies
And I ask them, I ask the butterflies
Is it like Lambrini?
And they say they just want money to buy nice things
For their butterfly boyfriends


Tesco octets and salad sandals,
Alfresco coquettes and pallid vandals.
Crumbly duckies and stubbornly cookies,
Humbly unlucky and rubbery rookies.


That sheet of music, waiting for a pianist.
That drip of mucus waiting for a facist.


I wish I had internal stillness,
Instead I have this mental illness.
Of shame and guilt and more of these,
My internal monologue likes to tease.
Self hatred and self loathing,
Constrict in their patrolling.
Depression is an awful thing,
It doesn’t make you want to sing.


Not questioning this weightlessness,
It’s new and so I embrace it
As one should before death.


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