While it may not have had a long run at Broadway's Neil Simon, Sting's 'The Last Ship' has received a well-deserved D.P. from Tony--for Best Original Score and for Best Orchestration, that is. Named Best Musical of 2014 by 'USA Today,' alas, Gordy's tale of ship-building woe-cum-triumph fell victim to a bad Broadway season, or at least the months where most musicals struggle to stay afloat. Too bad, so sad, shoulda called Robert Wyatt, maybe?
Despite a most valiant effort by ex-Policeman Sting, his autobiographical "The Last Ship" has decided to shut its door this month. Faced with an indifferent audience in the cruelest months of the year, the $15 million fledgling could not take off. With its last performance Saturday, Jan. 24, January proved to be the ax that slashed the performance for a final time. Despite the singer-songwriter donning the lead role, according to "Deadline," it just did not prove to be enough. The play, set in a faltering shipyard in Sting's hometown in northeast England, had its moments of jaunty tunes and upbeat jigs, but its dark subject matter did not inspire patrons to spread the word. Sadly, that is probably what claimed the musical in the end. This comes after Sting had reluctantly let his best friend, Jimmy Nail, go since he was unable to adequately draw audiences into the main character, Jackie White. As of now, the play is likely to close at a loss.
The holidays mean big money for Broadway producers. This season, 19 of the current 26 shows broke the $1 million mark for the week with almost 30,000 more people attending shows than last Christmas. The Broadway League says the shows pulled in $40,993,950 for the week ending Sunday, Dec. 28, better than the same week last year when 30 shows attracted $38,783,854. Also, attendance is on the rise from 290,386 in 2013 to 318,721 this year. The mild New York winter weather and Christmas falling on a Thursday may all be helpful factors in the increase in attendance. With a boost in celebrity casting in Broadway shows being another reason for people attending the theater, performances sans celebrities are holding their own. Despite having Hugh Jackman in "The River," Bradley Cooper in "The Elephant Man" and Sting in "The Last Ship" all onstage toward the end of the year, and "The Book of Mormon" hardly slowing down at all this year, an old favorite was once again king of Broadway in 2014. Disney's "The Lion King" set a weekly record at the Minskoff Theatre with a nine-performance haul of $2,885,321. The Disney favorite remains Broadway's highest-grossing show of the year for the second time in a row, despite six other shows having higher average ticket prices.
In an era where hyper-famous stars like Ariana Grande are rumored to resent their fans and walk out in the middle of photo shoots, legends like Sting invite their fans backstage for exclusive interviews--even if they are 6-years-old.
Tonight, Sting heeds the SOS call from his floundering Broadway production,"The Last Ship" and joins the cast stepping into the role of Jackie White. He replaces the original performer, Jimmy Nail, who was the 16-time Grammy winner's best friend.
The composer/lyricist and rock legend will join the cast for five weeks starting December 9.
Foregoes royalties, boosts backstage morale, may join cast.
This sweeping, artfully told story about the working class has the scope and drama that the big Broadway musical has traditionally been all about.
The composer and the star of the new Broadway musical will answer fans' questions via Twitter and a new video social app called Weev on October 15.
The semi-autobiographical show is set to move to Broadway in the fall.
British pop star Sting will perform songs from his new album, The Last Ship at 10 concerts later this year that will benefit New York's Public Theater. The singer, who shot to fame in the band the Police, said the concerts will run from September 25 through October 9 at the 260-seat Anspacher Theater at the arts organization in Manhattan.