Elisa-My reviews and Ramblings mentions the brief interaction between Blavatsky and the medium Jesse Shepard (1848 –1927):
Shepard returned to the US in 1871, meeting with spiritualist Madame Blavatsky, the founder of Theosophy. Blavatsky became uncomfortable with Shepard after she learned about his performances at Salle Koch, a St. Petersburg dance hall frequented by “dissipated characters of both sexes.” Taking up residence in Chicago, Shepard gave "mysterious and completely unique" performances in candlelit rooms, "accompanied" by the spirits of past composers and pianists.
|Detail of Villa Montezuma, San Diego, California|
Blavatsky referred to him twice in her writings, taking him to task for his imaginative restorations of Russian history while he was in that country. She described him in 1881 as “a really genuine, though rather erratic, medium, a ‘trance pianist’ and singer of America, through whose marvellous windpipe, the late Mesdames Catalini, Malibran, Grisi, and the Signori Lablache, Ronconi and Co., with a host of other deceased operatic celebrities, give daily their posthumous performances.”