The Man Who Saw Everything Supperclub
Updated: Apr 9
Feasting off the Abbey Road Crossing at our First Immersive Literary supperclub, inspired by Deborah Levy's Novel
'It had been Jennifer's idea to take a photograph of myself crossing the zebra on Abbey Road to give to Luna'
On the 22nd January 2020, we defied seasonal conventions of self-denial and invited guests into the world of Deborah Levy's Booker Prize-longlisted novel. Moving between London and East Berlin, 1988 and 2016, The Man Who Saw Everything is a story about the shifting nature of time, the self, love and loyalty. Saul Adler witnesses history unfolding around him as he steps onto the famous Abbey Road crossing and travels behind the Iron Curtain – slipping between an elusive past and future that cannot be captured and held, even by a camera.
'They had to be sunflowers. They were the only sort of flower she liked to look at in a vase, mostly because of their dark centres, which apparently reminded her of an eclipse'
Maria transformed the table into a zebra crossing, and covered it with vases of sunflowers and white roses, both motifs in the book. Oyster shells containing pearls were dispersed around the table, and she personalised handmade 'coffin' matchboxes – Saul Adler takes his father's ashes to Berlin in a matchbox – as place names, which guests took home as mementos.
'"We should look for pearls inside those oysters,' she said. 'Maybe we could make you another necklace?"'
We ate and drank our way through the story alongside Saul Adler, Jennifer Moreau, Saul's German translator Walter Müller and his younger sister Luna Müller. In honour of Luna, a Beatles fanatic, we dined to the soundtrack of Abbey Road.
"When the rainstorm was over, Walter took me mushrooming in the woods ... he wanted to teach me everything about mushrooms"
'He dropped the cauliflower into the bag and slung it over his shoulder'
'"I'm going to bake Luna a pineapple cake ... she says she would have our wall built one metre higher for just one piece of pineapple"'
The Man Who Saw Everything was a rich theme for an immersive dinner. Deborah Levy's writing is so vivid, complex, sharp and allusive; in her quicksilver hands, images shift, disappear, then reappear in another form, always striking and surprising. Please note that all quotations used in this article are excerpted from the novel, except this lovely feedback from our guests.
“A brilliant new twist on literary events”
”Incredibly beautiful and atmospheric and fun”
“The food was delicious, the decorations glorious, the company wonderful”