Community leaders to perform in history play for Noblesville Preservation Alliance


On Sept. 10, Noblesville Mayor Chris Jensen will dress in historic attire and appear in a play alongside former Mayor Mary Sue Rowland. The story is about love, melodrama and forgiveness.

From 2 to 4 p.m., the Noblesville Preservation Alliance will present “Forgiven,” a historical play by the late-Noblesville playwright John H. Wise. Set in 1898, the play features community leaders instead of theater actors.

“I wanted to do this play because it represents Noblesville, the history of Noblesville, but I was not looking for actors,” said Sandy Stewart, director of community outreach at Noblesville Preservation Alliance who also has a part in the play. “I was looking for community leaders as broader representation.”

Carla Crandall, the play’s director, said creating the rehearsal schedule was difficult because the actors are busy people in the community. As a result, the actors will read from a script during the show instead of doing traditional acting with stage blocking and line memorization.

The characters will wear costumes provided by Stewart, who makes and collects historic clothes. Crandall said she loved Stewart’s vision for the play and loved the costumes.

Jensen portrays a character in search of his past maiden lover. The maiden has died, but her sister – portrayed by Rowland — is still alive. Jensen’s character falls in love with the sister, because she acts and looks like his former lover.

Crandall said the arts are “the very breath” of Noblesville and believes the arts and culture are what keep Noblesville alive.

“That’s what makes this particular production so valuable because it brings not only forward the arts of 1898 but also the culture,” Crandall said. “And I think it would be a crime to all those from the 1800s to ever, ever lose sight of the heart of our town, which is the arts.”

Rowland said the arts are undervalued and that history is the No. 1 attraction of Noblesville. She said preservation “has to be part of what we do.”

Admission to the play is free but online registration is required by visiting