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Sting’s Last Ship Swept to Sea as Hard Winter Takes a Toll on Broadway

UK singer Sting, real name Gordon Sumner, couldn't save his Broadway musical from the dreaded winter doldrums on Broadway. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

UK singer Sting, real name Gordon Sumner, couldn’t save his Broadway musical from the dreaded winter doldrums on Broadway. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

Sting’s childhood memoir turned Broadway musical The Last Ship will close on Jan 24, despite heroic efforts by the iconic singer himself, who jumped on board in a last-ditch bid to keep the show afloat.

The Last Ship is one many casualties so far this Broadway season. January and February are brutal months.

Sting, real name Gordon Sumner, made a valiant effort to keep the show alive.

He admirably did every single press op he could to publicize the show. But it was just not to be. Even though his presence helped increase the box office over the last two weeks, it just wasn’t enough.

“When you launch a play, or record, you have to prioritize your media hits; usually, there’s just no way you can do everything,” said public relations guru David Salidor, analyzing the failed marketing effort.

“Sting did everything. Admirable for sure; I wish more artists of that caliber shared that work ethic,” he added.

Hopefully, various voting groups like the Tony Awards, Outer Circle Critics and Drama Desk will consider the musical for best score and Fred Applegate for Best Supporting Actor in a Musical.

Sources say producers Jeffrey Seller and Kathy Schenker (Sting’s manager) made the announcement to cast and crew last week. If you can, see The Last Ship before it sails.

It was a strong show with a vivid score and an extremely talented cast.

Sting was completely committed to the show, and invested all of his time and energy.

He even waived his songwriting royalty. He was present at the show every night from rehearsals to previews and through the opening.

When the box office didn’t take off, Sting joined the show to promote ticket sales. This worked, to some extent. But not being able to hit the million dollar mark in any week was a death knell.

The revival of Sideshow folded, too. In the next month, a lot of others, including the hit revival of Pippin and the Tony-winner Once will be gone.

Motown: the Musical is closing after almost 18 months. The show is doing very well, but not well enough.

Producers will take it to London’s West End, scale it back so it costs much less to produce, then bring a much scaled back version back to Broadway.

Broadway is not for the faint of heart, or shallow of pockets, especially when those Nor’Easters sweep down the Great White Way with snow, rain, ice and stiff winds.

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