Luke puts the cat among the pigeons in play at Lyceum

Musician Luke Carver Goss
Musician Luke Carver Goss
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Sheffield musician and actor Luke Carver Goss admits that sharing a name with a pop star can make life interesting at times.

He has the same name as one of the twins in the 1980s pop band Bros who had hits including When Will I Be Famous.

Luke, who is appearing at the Lyceum in the play Wonderful Tennessee, added the name Carver to make the distinction but that didn’t put off some keen fans. The fact that one brother has an acting career added to the confusion.

He remembers: “I was doing a show in Manchester where I had to wear a diamante-covered clown suit. One fan pursued me around the theatre!”

He added: “I’ve never met him but I have met his brother’s bass player years ago. He said, ‘You don’t look anything like your brother’!’”

Luke is combining his musical and acting skills in the play, which is part of the current Sheffield Theatres Brian Friel season.

In the play, a group of friends are celebrating a birthday and waiting in Donegal for a ferry. When it is delayed, lots of old secrets about the group’s intertwined relationships come to the surface.

Luke said: “The author has skilfully written a role for a musician that has some limited acting in it.

“The character George has an illness we assume is throat cancer and has three months to live. George expresses a lot of his thoughts through playing appropriate songs on his accordion.

Luke says it has been fascinating taking part in rehearsals. He said: “Paul Miller is such a master craftsman as a director.”

Luke has lived in Sheffield since 2007, when his partner got a job at the University of Sheffield. As a freelance musician Luke does a lot of travelling, so it’s been a treat to have a job on the doorstep. He said: “I can cycle into work with the accordion on my back!”

He needs to keep fit at the moment as he is running the London Marathon for the South Yorkshire charity Lost Chord, which uses music to help people with dementia.

He said: “I’ve met people who haven’t spoken for a year. When they start to sing the family member with them will often be in tears to see it.

“The lyrics of songs must be kept in a different part of the brain. All the words come back to them.”

They stayed after she moved jobs again. “We love it here so much we didn’t want to move,” he said.

He has worked for Sheffield Theatres in the past, including with Sheffield Youth Theatre on a show called Eyecatcher.

He added: “It’s lovely to come back again.”

Luke also runs the Ian McMillan Orchestra with the well-known Barnsley poet, adding: “I write the music for it and we’ve played all over the UK and Ireland.

“The band’s not running at the moment so I’m performing with him as a duo. There’s various commissions we’re working on with lots of musicians and choirs.”

He’s working on one strange show about a circus tiger that was kept in a terraced house in Holmfirth during World War Two by someone who came back from South Africa with it. Luke said: “I went to the house and saw the scratch marks on the wall!

“It’s the sort of thing that Ian is very keen on. We’ve been talking about it for years and found the right moment.

“The woman who owned the tiger is still alive and in her 90s.”

Wonderful Tennessee is at the Lyceum until this Saturday March 8. Box office: at the Crucible, call 0114 249 6000 or go online to www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk