Local Play Benefits Community’s Less Fortunate

Photo caption: Author and playwright collaborator Diane Iverson posed with her book and just a few of the more than 400 heart-shaped ornaments that were integral to the “Hannah’s Heart” production.

play based on a novel by local author Diane Iverson and adapted for stage by playwright Melanie Eubank has done for the greater community what the fictional character, 10-year-old Hannah Graces Meadows, did for her family and friends in their hometown of Prescott.

The play especially brought warmth to needy people — literally as well as figuratively.

Funds generated through play revenues are designated for two Prescott organizations that focus their resources on helping the homeless and the disadvantaged. 

The Coalition for Compassion and Justice (CCJ) and the Prescott Unified School District (PUSD) Family Resource Center split the proceeds resulting from three performances of “Hannah’s Heart.” 

It is the heartwarming story of a young Prescott girl who with her family is struggling to survive a meager Christmas season in the heart of the Great Depression of 1935.

Author Iverson and playwright Eubank were ecstatic at the support the community put behind the premiere of the play.  Both praised the widespread patronage that resulted in several thousand dollars of revenue to be distributed among CCJ and Family Resource Center recipients.

Performed on stage at the Ruth Street Theater of Prescott High School, the play told the story of how Hannah used her imagination and generous heart to help create a memorable Christmas for those around her despite having no money of her own. Not to be stopped, Hannah used her limited sewing ability to make heart-shaped ornaments for sale.   

The play was staged for three performance — Friday, Nov. 30; Saturday, Dec. 1; and Sunday, Dec. 2.

It wasn’t just ticket sales that raised money.  A special holiday market in the theater lobby called “Hannah’s Market” had more than 400 handmade vintage-cloth heart-shaped ornaments to sell. Iverson also sold books.

A big item was the handmade 90 X 90-inch quilt especially stitched by the Kwazy Kwquilters that was raffled.

There were also props from the production, which were made available to audience members.

Other sponsors stepped forward, including the Prescott United Methodist Church, the Prescott Daily Courier, El Gato Azul restaurant, Jay’s Bird Barn and Hannah’s Helpers.

Iverson said she is working on a second “Hannah” book, set in the same era.

“I would like to see stories about Hannah and her family and friends become part of the Prescott Christmas tradition, for after all, Prescott is Arizona’s Christmas City.  Just as with the production this year, I hope future productions can be fundraisers to benefit the needy and the homeless in our generous community,” Iverson said.