Sting musical The Last Ship to sail into the West End?


Following the news that a UK tour of the Sting musical The Last Ship is set to tour the UK next year, it could be eyeing a transfer to London’s West End late next year.

With music and lyrics by Sting, and a book by John Logan and Brian Yorkey, The Last Ship is inspired by the singer’s childhood in Wallsend in Tyne and Wear, and its connections with the shipbuilding industry. It tells the story of the community as the shipyards in the area begin to close, focussing on the Swan Hunter shipyard.

The musical premiered in America and opened on Broadway in 2014 at the Neil Simon Theatre starring Michael Esper and Rachel Tucker, with Sting joining the cast himself as Jackie White for a six-week period. The musical was nominated for two Tony Awards: Best Original Score and Best Orchestrations.

Now, a UK tour of the musical produced by Northern Stage has been announced, starring original Broadway cast member Jimmy Nail. Directed by Lorne Campbell, it is set to begin its tour at Northern Stage in Newcastle in March, before heading to Liverpool, Birmingham, Northampton, Leeds, Nottingham, Cardiff, Dublin, Edinburgh, Glasgow, York and ending in Salford in July.

The show is also produced by 59 Productions whose recent West End stage work includes Oslo at the National and the Harold Pinter Theatre, An American in Paris at the Dominion Theatre and City of Glass at the Lyric Hammersmith.

The Last Ship tried out in Chicago before the Broadway production, and has also had productions in Salt Lake City and Finland, but it has been yet to dock in the UK. With its intrinsically British storyline, a successful touring production could make its way to a West End theatre in time for the summer of 2018.

Photo courtesy Mark Savage for Northern Stage

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