When I was eighteen I left home to become a Franciscan priest because I was in love with St. Francis of Assisi, a man who changed the world 800 years ago. That passion has remained for decades and it seems to have taken on a new urgency now - mainly because of the complicated time we find ourselves in. St. Francis's message of peace is as important today as it was in the thirteenth century.
Around a year ago I came across an amazing quote from Vladimir Lenin, the architect of the Russian Revolution. He said: "What was needed to save Russia were ten St. Francis of Assisi's." I was shocked and wondered how this medieval character who simply wanted to see if it was possible to live the Gospels had affected an atheist like Lenin so deeply. And that's when I decided that I no longer wanted to be "like" St. Francis. I wanted to actually BE him. That's when I decided to write this musical.
"The message of St. Francis is just as important today as it was 800 years ago."
Stepping into the character of St. Francis has been the greatest gift of my life and career. Over the last 30 years I've had the opportunity to teach and sing around the world, but nothing comes close to this. The production is simple and can be performed almost anywhere - in a living room or on a Broadway theater. More than anything I love how people respond to the musical, as if they had a direct experience with the real St. Francis. If that is the real purpose of this, then I've been part of something truly amazing.
In 2020 I'll begin a tour that will change my life forever - traveling across the US with no money or support, going from city to city to share Brother Sun, Sister Moon as I make my way to New York. This is how Francis would have done it - in complete trust. Maybe I'll see you on the journey, and I hope you feel the love my favorite saint has for each one of us. All you'll have to do is look into his eyes!
We are thrilled to announce that Bill Free will be joining James on the entire Brother Sun, Sister Moon tour. Bill is a well known non-dual teacher who lives in New Hampshire with his wife Lisa Natoli. Like James, Bill will travel in complete trust from Portland, Or. to New York for the two week off-Broadway performances.