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18 West Monroe St, Chicago, IL 60603

The Last Ship

4.5 star rating4.5 star rating4.5 star rating4.5 star rating4.5 star rating

Closed July 13, 2014

A heartfelt and clearly sincere tribute to the men and women of the lost shipbuilding industry of North East England

Chicago Tribune

Why See The Last Ship?

A Musical Several Years in the Making

Following three years of careful research and writing, the brand new musical by music legend, Sting, is set to have its world premier in Chicago this summer. The production will be directed by two-time Tony Award winner Joe Mantello and Broadway stars Michael Esper (American Idiot) and Rachel Tucker (We Will Rock You).

Similar in theme to Billy Elliot's raw portrayals of human relationships put under pressure by financial strain, The Last Ship depicts the universal story of survival and love in families and close-knit communities through Sting's haunting music.

What is The Last Ship about?

When they shipyard finally closes in the 1980s, former foreman Jackie White (Jimmy Nail) inspires to his co-workers to take over the shipyard and build one final ship. Meanwhile, prodigal son Gideon (Michael Esper) returns home after his father's death, having left fifteen years prior to avoid following his shipbuilder father's vocation - abandoning his relationship with Meg (Rachel Tucker) whom he left behind. Is he too late to make amends and start their lives together?

Stemming from Sting's own memories of growing up in the North East of England in Wallsend near Newcastle - which also serve as the inspiration for his 1990 album The Soul Cages - The Last Ship tells the emotive and inspiring story of a struggling shipyard and the workers who help construct these titanic triumphs of man's mechanical and creative genius.

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Additional Information


Previews from: 10 June 2014

Opening night: 25 June 2014


The Last Ship is suitable for all audiences aged 12 and upwards

Run time

Two hours and 30 minutes with one 15-minute intermission

And before you stop reading

Please note that whilst Sting developed the story and composed the songs and score for The Last Ship, he does not perform in the stage production


You may be required to have had a COVID vaccine in order to attend this performance or show proof of a negative test. Please contact the venue directly for more information on this.

Cast and Creative


Michael Esper as Gideon Fletcher

Rachel Tucker as Meg Dawson

Jimmy Nail as Jackie White

Aaron Lazar as Arthur Millburn

Sally Ann Triplett as Peggy White

Collin Kelly-Sordelet as Young Gideon/Tom Dawson

Fred Applegate as Father James O'Brien


Directed by Joe Mantello

Music and Lyrics by Sting

Choreography by Steven Hoggett

Book by John Logan and Brian Yorkey

Set and costume design by David Zinn

Lighting design by Christopher Akerlind

Sound design by Brian Ronan

What you thought

18 reviews, average rating: (4.2 Stars)

4.0 star rating

Anonymous: “Compelling , Soulful, Beautiful Story of Life! ”

An experience you should not miss! A universal story . The production... more

Christine Borys: “helping WTTW in a most enjoyable evening”

I first heard Sting with other musicians on public television last fall... more

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