A FORMER Essex schoolboy turned actor is preparing for his latest role which will see him on-stage for one night only at Basildon’s Towngate Theatre.

Darren Day has confirmed his appearance as a special guest star on the UK tour of Dreamcoat Stars.

The concert features artists who have played the coveted role of Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat – a role which Darren, originally from Colchester, took on 30 years ago, taking over from This Morning’s Philip Schofield.

Keith Jack and Chris Barton, who competed against Southend’s Lee Mead in the BBC’s singing competition Any Dream Will Do, are among the other Josephs performing in the show.

Echo: Josephs - Dreamcoat Stars features singers who have taken on the coveted role of JosephJosephs - Dreamcoat Stars features singers who have taken on the coveted role of Joseph (Image: Dreamcoat Stars)

The musical extravaganza opened at Chelmsford Theatre in March and includes songs from Joseph, and other much-loved shows including Jesus Christ Superstar, SIX, Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Mamma Mia, We Will Rock You, and Jersey Boys.

Darren will appear at the Towngate Theatre, in St Martin’s Square, Basildon, on Friday, May 12 at 7.30pm.

Tickets can be purchased at dreamcoatstars.com.

Who is Darren Day?

Colchester-born Darren was once a Butlins Redcoat, but his stage and screen career began in 1988 when he won the BBC’s Opportunity Knocks.

Echo: Reality star - Darren Day was a Celebrity Big Brother housemateReality star - Darren Day was a Celebrity Big Brother housemate

His big break came in 1993 when he was handed Philip Schofield’s dreamcoat, landing the role of Joseph at the London Palladium.

The actor, who was a pupil at Sir Charles Lucas School in Colchester, has also appeared on reality TV, starring in the first series of I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! in 2002.

He also became a housemate in the famous Celebrity Big Brother house alongside The Only Way is Essex star Gemma Collins, whose catchphrase “I’m claustrophobic Darren!” lives on to this day.

Darren boasts an impressive CV of TV credits, including roles in Doctors, Hollyoaks, Stella, The Bill, and Mile High.

The 54-year-old’s stage credentials are impressive, too, with appearances in Great Expectations at Theatre Clwyd, and Summer Holiday in the West End and on a UK tour.

He also performed in The Rocky Horror Show’s 25th-anniversary tour, We Will Rock You, and Les Miserables.