The concerts play the Anspacher Theater through Oct. 9. The evenings of storytelling and song offer audiences the opportunity to hear music from the album "The Last Ship," which was released Sept. 24. The musical of the same title will premiere on Broadway next fall.
According to the Public, "Drawing inspiration from the shipbuilding community of Wallsend in the North East of England where he was born and raised, Sting has crafted both an entire world and a close-knit community of original characters. In celebration of the album, these intimate benefit concerts at The Public Theater will reveal Sting’s influences behind the album through storytelling and visual projections paying homage to the traditional roots of the North East of England, with music from pub-like folk tunes to a wall of sound from Sting’s full band, many of whose members also hail from the North East."
Tickets range $250-$2,500; however, the Public Theater is making a limited number of free seats available to the general public through a daily lottery system, which will take place in-person at the theatre. Beginning at 5:30 PM, individuals can enter the lottery by filling out an entry card with their name, indicating if they want one or two tickets. All winners must be present at the time of the drawing. A minimum of 10 free tickets will be given out at each performance, excluding the special Sting.com fan club concert on Oct. 2.
"Sting is one of the great artists of our time, a brilliant songwriter who is also a model of activist commitment," Public Theater artistic director Oskar Eustis said in a statement. "The Last Ship is shaping up to be a masterpiece, both an elegy for and a celebration of the working class life of the Newcastle shipyards. The Public is honored to call Sting a friend and thrilled to be hosting these benefit concerts."
Here's how the musical is billed: "Life in the English seafaring town of Wallsend has always revolved around the local shipyard, where the hardworking men of this close-knit community construct magnificent vessels with tremendous pride. But Gideon Fletcher dreams of a different future. He sets out to travel the world, leaving his life and his love behind. When Gideon returns home fourteen years later, he finds the shipyard’s future in grave danger and his childhood sweetheart engaged to someone else. As the men of Wallsend take their fate into their own hands and build a towering representation of the shared dream that has defined their existence, Gideon realizes that he left behind more than he could have ever imagined."
Visit PublicTheater.org or phone (212) 967-7555.