The main motivation for my performances as an actor has always been to share Jesus. I simply want to tell the greatest story ever told to as many people as I can, whether they happen to be know Jesus already or not.

As I’ve begun to do this, I’ve witnessed some incredible responses. Busy shoppers stop to watch, and natural conversations start from simple questions such as, what did you think of the performance?” or, what did you think of the main character?”. In one early street performance, two people became Christians on the spot. In another — at Hyde Park Corner — a group of Muslims were reduced to a stunned and admiring silence. I can never fully predict how people will react to hearing the greatest story ever told, all I can do is tell it.

My performance, AM MARK, is a one-man show and started as a kind of experiment. Because I loved telling stories as an English and Drama teacher, I wondered how I could link this gift more explicitly to my faith. I hit upon the idea of performing the whole of Mark’s Gospel as a solo word-for-word presentation. I knew other actors had done it before and it was the most action-packed bible story I knew, but mostly, I admit, I was drawn to it because it was one of the shortest narratives! Little did I know that within a few years I would appear on national television, perform to sell out audiences at the Edinburgh Fringe, and have my own film released on American Network CMaxTV. Not to mention the numerous gigs in shopping centres, speakers’ corners and parks, colleges and conferences, churches and cathedrals in the UK and around the world.


My hope in all of this was that some word, some gesture, some moment would deeply resonate with whoever happened to be watching. I sincerely believed that the Holy Spirit would take His word and bring it alive in people’s hearts in His own good time.

But then a curious thing occurred. I began to discover that I AM MARK was having an impact on believers as well. At one level this was an intellectual response. People rarely read the whole gospel through from beginning to end or hear it aloud in one sitting, which means it loses some of its overall impact. And of course, St. Mark had a powerful theology all of his own. Mark’s anticipation of the coming kingdom, his concern for economic, racial, and gender injustice, his emphasis on the necessity of suffering – all of this was coming alive for many people for the first time. In my opinion, this is a powerful testament to the importance of the arts in our Christian communities.

But it was the worshipful effects of the presentation that were most surprising: people were clearly experiencing Jesus. The woman in Bristol Cathedral who burst into tears at the crucifixion; the rapt wonder in people’s expressions as they gazed on at the miracles; the many glistening eyes I saw while Jesus was teaching; the way in which people felt moved to express their emotions to me personally, saying again and again that they felt they were actually there.

All of this convinced me that God was powerfully at work through what I offered in my performance, but I shouldn’t have been surprised. I also found that the words of this extraordinary tale were never simply lines to be learned or to be performed. They carried a wonderful resonance for me, even in rehearsal. I would regularly burst into tears and have to stop in my tracks because of a significant concept or a single turn of phrase. God would begin speaking into my personal circumstances in ways that I could scarcely anticipate: I was often encouraged, strengthened, corrected, and blessed out of my socks. My performances still focus on my heart to share Jesus, but there is no denying that they are also an act of worship for myself and those watching.

Now eight years on, the response is the same. Whenever I perform, it feels like Jesus is holding us all in a wonderful embrace, informing us with a powerful sense of conviction that these words are true, He is real and this story really matters. 

You can discover more about I AM MARK here and the full performance is now available from CMaxTV here.