In Cunard’s 175th anniversary year, Sting delighted audiences in his hometown with songs from his latest album and Broadway musical ‘The Last Ship’ on 24th and 25th April 2015 to benefit the Sage Gateshead 10th Birthday Appeal. These were the only UK performances.
Sting said, “‘The Last Ship’ stories are based on the community I was brought up in, the shipbuilding community of Wallsend, and so to bring it back here like this is a wonderful honour and very emotional. I’m thrilled to be here.
“I was born and raised as close to the river as you can possibly get. I lived in Gerald Street, which is one of the streets that lead down to the shipyard, and I could walk out of my house and see giant ships at the end of my street, which was a massive symbol for me. I watched them launched, which is a kind of apocalyptic event for a child. I watched thousands of men walk down to the yard every day and watched them walk back home every night and wondered with some trepidation whether that wouldn't be my destiny too. I didn't want it to be - I had other dreams.
“But like everyone in the town we were immensely proud of the ships that were built there, some of the largest, most important ships ever built, right there at the end of my street – some of them by Cunard. And that was something that the town got a lot of pride from."
In benefitting the Sage Gateshead’s 10th Birthday Appeal, proceeds raised from the performances will ensure that its vital work in the region will continue.