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Wednesday, December 7

New Sting Musical The Last Ship

UPDATED 6TH FEBRUARY 2012: The Last Ship was tried out over the weekend at Newcastle’s Live Theatre with Sting attending two script-in-hand performances to gauge audience reaction.

Performers included Jimmy Nail and his sister Val McLane, while American producer Jeffrey Seller (Rent, Avenue Q), director Joe Mantallo and writer Brian Yorkey were also in attendance. The run-through was directed by Rob Mathes.

Sting said: “It’s kind of nerve-wracking and a huge risk to come to Newcastle and present something very unfinished and raw, and hope people will understand the process and feel they can invest in it emotionally. I was trying to honour that period of history here and these men. Although the conditions they worked in were appalling, with an inhospitable, toxic environment of asbestos, red lead and welding fumes, they were ferociously proud of the ships they built”

The story is drawn from his own childhood memories of growing up in the north east before he found fame as the lead singer of pop group The Police and centres on a group of shipyard workers who build their own ship after their yard is closed. Inspired by a local Priest  they decide to set sail.

The Last Ship is a stage musical adaptation of Sting's 1991 album "The Soul Cages" which includes his classic numbers Roxanne, Walking On The Moon and Message In A Bottle. Sting has already composed over 20 new songs plus the musical will include a handful of pre-existing Sting songs framed within a new context.

The musical  has also had a try-out in New York, had partly been influenced by his solo album The Soul Cages, released in 1990 shortly after the death of his father. Sting said that the musical would likely premiere in New York before transferring to the UK.

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