Five Minutes With...

Darren Jeffries

Wrexham-born Darren Jeffries is best known for his long-running role as Sam 'O.B.' O'Brien in Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks. He's currently rehearsing a new dark comedy at Theatr Clwyd, For The Grace Of You Go I, written by BAFTA award-winner Alan Harris, which opens on Saturday, June 12.

Actor Darren Jeffries.

Actor Darren Jeffries.

How has it been working at Theatr Clwyd?

Very special. I was born in Wrexham and my dad's side are from Mold, my cousin Enya even works at Theatr Clwyd!

I remember seeing the place when we would visit my Auntie Janene, who sadly passed away when I was 17.

She'd be thrilled that I'm appearing here, she was always so enthusiastic and supportive of my acting.

You joined the Hollyoaks cast in 1997 when you were just 16, what was it like taking such a big role at such a young age?

Exciting! I wanted to be an actor from a very young age and had to pinch myself a fair few times.

It was unheard of in the area I was from and that feeling of gratitude never left me, even after 10 years on the show. It was the best professional experience I've ever had.

Did you have a favourite storyline over your time on Hollyoaks?

We packed so much in over the years, I've always found it tough to pick a favourite.

One I was reminded of recently was a storyline set in London acting alongside Andrew Lloyd Webber!

He was such a class act, very professional as I'm sure you can imagine.

What's For The Grace Of You Go I about?

It's a comedy most of all, and a very human one. Alan Harris (writer) has covered some very special ground.

Mental health, companionship, self-esteem, the work-life balance and Finnish films all get a look-in!

What's your character like?

Mark is... complicated! He's desperate to be something he isn't, at the expense of everyone around him.

I guess he's disillusioned, and wants so much more from life. He just has no idea of how to go about getting it.

What do you do to relax/in your spare time?

I have a two-year-old son, so neither of those things really exist at the moment!

If I need to relax I'll normally lock myself in the bathroom.

And my spare time involves cleaning crayon off walls, pretending to be a dinosaur and combing snot out of his hair.

What advice would you give anyone wanting to become an actor?

It's a long stretch of patience and persistence, whichever level you find yourself at.

And there's no shame in getting a second job to support your acting career, despite what some might say. We've all got bills to pay!

For The Grace Of You Go I is at Theatr Clwyd from Saturday, June 12, with tickets from just £10. Booking available at or by calling 01352 344101.