The life of Francesco told in dramatic form to enlighten and inspire persons throughout the world was first envisioned by Francesco’s creator Richard C. Leach who sought to bring the story of Francesco to life for all audiences via the musical art form. a group of renowned artists were gathered for the work of creating the finest show possible for the stage. The show was put into a format appealing to eclectic audiences, from the spiritually motivated to those interested in excellence in music and drama, to those interested in a very extraordinary human story, this show delivers over a spectrum of interests as we travel the episodes of Francesco’s life.
The episodes of Francesco’s early life are interwoven beautifully in episodic form by the Oscar award-winning writer, Vincenzo Cerami. We view the youthful reveler, aristocrat and soldier who transformed into a man of the greatest convictions with regard to the brotherhood of mankind and peace among all humanity. Francesco’s life as poet, philosopher and soul mate of his life-long love, Chiara are spiritedly retold as we view their life and commitment together within the societies of faith they founded.
All the passages of Francesco have modern relevance as contemporary society faces all the challenges that were the theme of his life with questions of war and peace, globalism and natural conservancy, spiritual ennui and faith.
Richard (Dick) Leach
(August 24, 1927-May 29, 2001):
Dick Leach and his wife, Rosemary, spent five days in Assisi, Italy, in 1997 where they read the Life of Francis by the Franciscan friar Thomas Celano, a contemporary of Francis, and visited the holy places where St. Francis, El Poverello (“The Little Poor Man”), launched his world-changing movement in the thirteenth century. These experiences motivated Dick, who for a long time had had a deep love and admiration for Francis, to fulfill a very personal ambition to share his love for El Poverello as “our only reliable guide to the future.” Dick committed his resources to create a Broadway-quality musical based on the life of St. Francis and to share the inspiration he had gained from the story of the beloved saint. Francesco, Il Musical, which he had both helped write and produce, was based on Dick’s original treatment, the show was performed in an elaborate, 1000-seat, state-of-the-art theatre in Assisi, built by Dick’s company for the production, and fulfilled his purpose – not simply to honor the saint, but to communicate the message of St. Francis. READ MORE
Writer – Oscar Winner
Vincenzo Cerami has had an extensive literary career as a poet, novelist and dramatist for the past 30 years and is one of the most celebrated contemporary artists of Italy today. Mr Cerami has worked prolifically in theater, cinema and television. Mr. Cerami is perhaps best known internationally for his work on “Life is Beautiful” which garnered seven Oscar nominations and three Academy Awards.
French-Canadian composer, Benoit Jutras, has been Music Director and Composer for the critically acclaimed Cirque de Soleil including the shows: “O,” “La Nouba,” “Mystére,” and “Quidam.” Benoit’s “Le Reve” was produced in collaboration with director Franco Dragone for Steve Wynn’s new megaresort in Las Vegas. Benoit’s extensive credits also includes film and television soundtracks, “Far Side Of The Moon” for Robert Le Page.
Production Designer – Oscar Winner
Dante Ferretti has worked with the foremost directors of our generation including Federico Fellini, Jean Jacques Annaud, Martin Scorcese and Francis Ford Coppola. Mr Ferretti has received a number of rewards for his work including six Oscar nominations and an Academy Award for his work on “The Aviator.”
Costume Designer – Oscar Winner
Gabriella Pescucci has worked on a number of acclaimed productions with a wide range of artists such as Roland Jaffe, Sergio Leone and Frederico Fellini. Ms. Pescucci has received a multitude of awards which includes an Academy Award for her work with Martin Scorcese on “The Age of Innocence.”