We gathered last Thursday at 23-25 Brook Street – where Handel lived from 1723 to 1759, and composed the Messiah, and where Hendrix lived in 1968-69, when Electric Ladyland came out – for funeral biscuits with caraway seeds, and schooners of sherry, before the four-minute walk through a cold Mayfair evening to St George’s Church, Hanover Square.Read more: LRB blog
‘How to start?’ said Patrick Wildgust, the curator of Shandy Hall, his jacket sleeves rolled up as he leaned forward on the lectern. St George’s is large, full of vertical space that makes words resonate. ‘In which direction should we proceed?’ William Kent’s 1724 Last Supper hung behind him. This wasn’t a re-enactment of Laurence Sterne’s 1768 funeral, Wildgust said, but a collection of fragments: ‘a scattered tribute’.