Writer Patty Willis and composer Mary Lou Prince will perform "Man from Magdalena” in the Leona Wagner Black Box Theater March 24-25 at 7:30 p.m.

This musical details the events of selflessness that saves a 9-year-old boy’s life.

The musical recounts the story of Manuel Jesús Córdova Soberanes, who, in November 2007, was crossing the border seeking a better life in the United States. After traveling for days and being only eight hours from his destination in Tucson, Arizona, he noticed a car on the side of the road.

When he walked over to examine the car, he found that an accident had killed the driver, leaving her 9-year-old child helpless. Soberanes decided to abandon his journey and wait with the boy until help arrived, knowing he would likely be detained by authorities.

“I waited 19 months after it happened to write this because I thought that somebody was going to write this story,” Willis said. “This was going to be somebody else’s story.”

When she began writing, Willis was attending a Quaker seminary in Arizona. The president of the seminary asked if she knew “a story of a stranger who becomes an angel,” and she knew it was her chance to share the story that had inspired her.

With Prince's help, they completed the show and performed it for the first time Jan. 28, 2010, at an interfaith conference in Indiana.

The show uses minimalist sets and costumes and an array of expressive music to paint a picture of selflessness and angels who walk the earth. Since 2010, they have performed it 21 times throughout the United States, from Indiana to Arizona to California.

“I thought a lot about the different characters,” Willis said. “I’m so compassionate to the border. We don’t see what’s happening. We don’t see the poverty.”

All net proceeds from this show will be donated to fund microloans for poverty-stricken families in Mexico and Central America through kiva.org. According to manfrommagdalena.com, Willis and Prince have raised about $95,000 to fund the microloans.

Tickets for the show are $20 in advance and can be purchased at arttix.org or by calling 801-355-2787. Tickets can also be purchased at the door for $25. For more information, visit manfrommagdalena.com.

If you go ...

What: "Man from Magdalena”

When: March 24-25, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center, Leona Wagner Black Box Theater, 138 W. 300 South

Tickets: $20 advance tickets; $25 at the door

Phone: 801-355-2787

Web: manfrommagdalena.com, arttix.org

Email: mswensen@deseretnews.com