Sofka Zinovieff talks to David Freeman
The Mad Boy, Lord Berners, My Grandmother and Me
Saturday 27 September 2014
Blenheim Palace: The Marlborough RoomVenue
Writer and granddaughter of the ‘Mad Boy’, Robert Heber-Percy, Sofka Zinovieff talks to broadcaster David Freeman about the scandalous lives and eccentricities of a cultured elite living in Faringdon House in Oxfordshire, a home she inherited from her grandfather and is moving to this summer. Faringdon House was home in the 1930s to composer Lord Berners, friend of Stravinsky, Picasso and Gertrude Stein and renowned for his eccentricities. He made Faringdon House an aesthete’s paradise renowned for its exquisite food and the great minds who were invited. His companion was Robert Heber-Percy, a physical hothead who would ride naked through the grounds and loved cocktails and nightclubs. Their relationship was scandalous enough but became a ménage à trois with the addition of pregnant society girl Jennifer Fry. Berners died in 1950, leaving Heber-Percy in charge of Faringdon House.
Zinovieff inherited Faringdon House unexpectedly from Heber-Percy in 1986. She is author of Eurydice Street: A Place in Athens, Red Princess: A Revolutionary Life and The House on Paradise Street. After many years living in Greece, she is returning to live at Faringdon House.
Supported by Ian and Carol Sellars.