SCOT Squad star Darren Connell says he is a stand-up comedian first - despite his acting and TV success.

The funnyman might have became a household name playing dim-witted Bobby Muir in the hit BBC comedy Scot Squad but for comedy fans, it is his stand-up routine which is a winner.

For Darren, 30, has sold out his two night run at this year’s Glasgow International Comedy Festival.

Darren, whose show Against The Gran will be at Blackfriars Basement on Friday and Saturday, said: “Scot Squad fans see my stand up and they are expecting to see Bobby Muir.

“They don’t know I have been doing stand up for more than 10 years.

“I was a stand up comedian first. I went to a pub one night and Joe Hullait, the Scot Squad creator was in having a beer, he seen me doing stand up and he asked me to do an audition for the show, and that is how that happened.”

He added: “My show is totally different from that character.

“It is dark and surreal. I talk about dark subjects but I always make myself the brunt of the jokes.”

Darren, who grew up in the city’s Springburn, named his show Against the Grain because he likes to challenge himself in his own life.

He recently visited Peru on a detox holiday, and although that experience was challenging, it has given him material for the show.

He joked: “It wasn’t really a holiday I ended up in the Amazon jungle living in a hut for two weeks with no sugar, bread, TV, electricity or mobile phone.”

He added: “When I was in there, I was thinking what the hell am I doing here?

“But I couldn’t help but laugh at the situation I got myself into.

“I even managed to write a show out of the situation. I am totally glad I did it, it was a detox holiday and I came back having dropped couple of sizes. I had to give my dad five pairs of my old denims. It was a total shock to the system.”

Darren’s career has really taken off over the last few years and he has become popular through his podcast show, which has featured guests including Still Game stars Gavin Mitchell and Greg Hemphill.

He said: “The last couple of years have been mental for me. I just started the podcast as a hobby and all of sudden it just drew these crazy numbers. I think one week had 50,000 views and it just like exploded.”

But comedy is his first love and he can’t wait to perform at the festival.

He said: “I just think there is something really special about the International Glasgow Comedy Festival. Maybe I am biased because I am from Glasgow.

“There is just a buzz about it. Any show you go to, at any level, you are going to get something good from it.”

He added: “It feels good for the soul to look at the diary and think I have my solo shows at the festival.”

You can catch Darren next at The Grado and Connell Show which takes place at Gardyne Theatre in Dundee on June 15.

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For more on Darren, follow his Twitter @DarrenConnell87

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