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Sting Musical ‘The Last Ship’ Books Broadway Theater, Cast

The Last Ship,” the new musical with songs by Sting, has booked Broadway passage to the Neil Simon Theater, where the show will launch previews this fall.

Casting also has been confirmed, with Michael Esper leading an ensemble that also includes Aaron Lazar, Fred Applegate and U.K. thesps Rachel Tucker and Jimmy Nail. In addition, the show aims to get a publicity boost from a Feb. 21 broadcast on PBS “Great Performances” of a concert at the Public Theater, filmed last year, presenting material from the tuner.

Musical, with a book by John Logan (“Red,” “I’ll Eat You Last”) and Brian Yorkey (“Next to Normal”), was already lined up for a fall opening following its summer tryout in Chicago. The title had largely been expected to dock at the Simon after “Big Fish” shuttered there at the end of the year.

Storyline centers on a man who returns after 14 years to his English seaside town to find the town’s shipyard threatened and his childhood sweetheart ready to marry another man. Sting, who released an album of the show’s songs last year, based the story loosely on his own childhood experiences.

Directed by Joe Mantello (“Wicked”) and choreographed by Steven Hoggett (“Once”), “The Last Ship” begins Broadway previews Sept. 30 ahead of an Oct. 26 opening. In Chicago, the tuner runs June 10-July 13.

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