Feedback from the audience of Regina v Turing and Murray VR experience. Interviews conducted by Alex Hewitt.
“I didn’t know much about it until I saw the film on TV. It made me wonder about what the hell went on in the 1950s to be absolutely honest, the way people thought about homosexuality and how people were treated as worse than criminals, for indulging in that sort of thing, which I thought was abhorrent”.
“Listening to the videos on Alan Turing and on Murray, I think the thing that really got to me was the judge, his summing up, and the way he saw Turing and Murray, and of course he was talking about those days when it all happened, not today so you’ve got to go back over what he was thinking back in the 50s when the trial was on, and I thought it was very fair what he said on the facts that were presented to him in those days. He realised that Murray was just caught up with Turing because he got someone to look after him, and he hadn’t had that sort of affection or closeness to a person. And I think, you’ll forgive the expression, Turing did turn him on to a certain degree, but I think he was mixed up as far as his sexuality was concerned at the time. But I think the price he paid for it was far out of order.”
“I thought the whole thing was a very good experience and I’m glad that I have seen it”
Knew very little of Turing before event but was aware of Turing breaking the enigma code but nothing about his life. Gained understanding of his conviction, and felt it was unjust.
Chris and Toby
Chris: “We came because I was curious not only to see what the display about Turing was like, but I’ve not used a reality headset before so that was part of the purpose for me.”
Chris had some technical issues with the headset, didn’t find he could adjust it for his vision, found the judges headset better. “The narrative was interesting.”
Toby: “I too know an overview of Turing, his work cracking the enigma and his collaboration on some of the original computers, and later onto his theories to see if a computer is truly programmable. I also realise the dreadful treatment and now his historical status among the great mathematicians and programmers.”
He found the VR experiences were a "great supplement to my current knowledge and it had some very interesting ideas laid in of his understanding of the world, and other characters too made quite a good extra piece of knowledge.”
Knew about his work and the court case previously, but couldn’t get tickets for the play, and was keen to come back next day for standby for any cancellations.
“I didn’t really have any views about the case before in terms of how it went, it was interesting to hear the judge's’ perspective because he sounded quite empathic and quite sympathetic, even though he didn’t have any understanding of his sexuality really. He didn’t want to be too judgemental. But I don’t know if that’s the truth or somebody else’s perspective on it”
Found the headsets awkward to use as one was too quite, one too big. Found it to be a good experience overall.
Basic knowledge of court case prior to event, has been reading about his work. She found the VR headset a bit unclear, however “It told me a little bit more that perhaps the chap was seduced”
First time using VR, really enjoyed the experience. “I was fascinated to try it and I really enjoyed doing it, very realistic. The content was good and the ideas within the content were superimposed on aspects of the windows and the ceilings which sort of merged the two, because the content was not related to the building, I mean through Turing it was”
Deborah and Izzy
Izzy knew about the enigma code, Deborah had done some basic reading before the event. Izzy saw Murray, Deborah saw Turing. They expressed disappointment that they hadn’t heard about it earlier as there were less things to do on the Sunday.
Deborah on viewing Arnold Murray: “He sounded like a boy that hadn’t really got anything. I don’t know if he was homosexual or just grateful for a meal and attention and affection, and obviously didn’t think there was anything wrong with what he had done. I though it was quite interesting, the way he described indecency ‘surely if they’re going to categorise it, all indecency is gross'. But I thought his point of view was quite innocent really”
Izzy on viewing Turing “He just talked about the ceiling on mine!” She talked positively about the VR experience itself, but seemed to find it a bit strange!