Sting Will Perform Benefit Concerts of The Last Ship at the Public Theater This Fall
By Adam Hetrick
Grammy Award-winning musician Sting will perform a series of benefit concerts for the Public Theater this fall. The evenings will premiere music from his new musical and album of the same title, The Last Ship.
The ten-concert series, to be presented Sept. 25-Oct. 9 in the Anspacher Theater, promises evenings of "music and storytelling with one of the world's most prolific artists, … [offering] unique insight into the creative process of both his new album, to be released Sept. 24, and his forthcoming play of the same name, premiering in 2014."
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. Sting Fan Club members will also have the chance to win free tickets for the Oct. 2 concert, which will celebrate the artist's birthday. Visit Sting.com for details.
"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."
American Express Cardmembers will have first access to tickets, with an Amex presale beginning July 10. Sting Fan Club members will have their own presale access beginning July 13. Members of the general public can begin purchasing tickets July 14.
Visit PublicTheater.org or phone (212) 967-7555.
The Last Ship has music and lyrics by Sting with a book by Tony and Pulitzer Prize winner Brian Yorkey (Next to Normal, If/Then) and Tony winner John Logan (Red, I'll Eat You Last). It has received several workshops and readings in recent years.
Previous reports indicate that The Last Ship is aiming for a 2014 Broadway arrival. Sting's forthcoming album is based on songs from the production.
Tony Award-winning director Joe Mantello (Other Desert Cities, The Normal Heart), who staged a previous U.K. reading of the rock musical in early 2012, also staged a two-week New York City reading of The Last Ship earlier this spring.
The musical is being produced by Tony Award winner Jeffrey Seller (Rent, In the Heights) and Sting's longtime manager, Kathryn Schenker.
The Last Ship incorporates biographical elements from Sting's life and uses his boyhood home, Newcastle, England, for its locale. It features an original score with a few pre-existing songs from Sting's catalogue, which are given new context in the narrative.
Songs revealed for the album include the title song, billed as a "waltz-time folk tune, heavy with Christian imagery"; as well as "And Yet," described as "a jazzy funk number"; and "Dead Man's Boots."
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