Set against the backdrop of the dying shipbuilding industry in a small English town, “The Last Ship” — also the name of Sting’s latest album (set for release Sept. 24) — follows crisscrossing stories of a romantic triangle, father-son relationships and a closing factory. John Logan (the “Hugo” and “Skyfall” screenwriter whose stage credits include “I’ll Eat You Last” and “Red”) and Brian Yorkey, co-writer of Pulitzer-winning tuner “Next to Normal,” pen the the book for the musical, to be directed by Joe Mantello (“Wicked”) and choreographed by Steven Hoggett (“Once”).
Project has been seen in industry readings in New York, and Sting is on tap to perform songs from the album and the upcoming musical in a series of ten concerts at Off Broadway’s Public Theater.
Sting is the latest well-known act from the pop music world to try his hand at a musical. Last season’s Tony champion “Kinky Boots” has songs written by Cyndi Lauper, and tuners by artists including Sheryl Crow and John Mellencamp are currently in varying stages of development.
Chicago is one of Broadway’s go-to towns to try out new material prior to bringing it to Gotham. Tuner “Big Fish,” now in previews and opening Oct. 6, played a stint there earlier this year, and shows including “Kinky Boots” and “The Producers” also got their starts there.
Produced by Jeffrey Seller (“Rent,” “Avenue Q,” “In the Heights”) and Kathryn Schenker, “The Last Ship” runs in Chicago June 10-July 13 at Chicago’s Bank of America Theater. Exact details for the fall 2014 opening on Broadway remain to be set.