Michael Turner is a musician, and writer of poetry, prose and opera librettos.
Turner's work is often an examination of the entrenched and the seemingly ordinary; he often explores in great detail objects and concepts which are usually valued as means to an end, rather than ends, in themselves, as he does in Company Town and Kingsway. Turner often varies his style and employs rich multi-format and intertextual approaches in his works, such as American Whiskey Bar, and The Pornographer's Poem.
Turner's work was adapted to radio, stage, television and feature film, and he has been translated into French, Russian, and Korean. He won the Genie Award in 1996 for Music/Original Song, the 2000 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize and was also a finalist for the 1992 Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize.
Turner collaborated with artist Stan Douglas on two experimental-video screenplays, titled Journey Into Fear and Suspiria and on a screenplay with filmmaker Bruce LaBruce, titled Untitled Von Gloeden Project, based on the life and work of photographer Wilhelm Von Gloeden. He was commissioned to write a libretto for the Modern Baroque Opera Company, based on Wilhelm Busch's Max & Moritz.