Preview: The Cone Gatherers; King’s Theatre

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AS YOU’D expect, Benidorm star Kenny Ireland gets recognised a fair bit when he’s out and about.

“One time I was walking in Edinburgh and this chap across the street shouted ‘Where do I know you from?’, says the Scots-born actor, who plays sex-mad swinger Donald Stewart in the award-winning ITV1 comedy. “‘Benidorm’, I shouted back at him. He thought about it for a minute and said ‘Must have the wrong guy, ‘cos me and the wife go to Torremolinos’.”

A former artistic director of the Royal Lyceum, Ireland is no stranger to Auld Reekie - and he returns here next week in the role of director to bring Robin Jenkins’ 1955 novel, The Cone Gatherers, to the King’s Theatre.

“It’s one of my favourite ever Scottish novels,” he says of the tale of the dichotomy of good and evil set against the backdrop of World War Two and Hitler’s regime.

“It’s a very, very powerful novel and we’ve done this adaptation, which so far is getting four-star reviews.”

Looking further ahead and Ireland reveals that next year he’ll be heading back to Spain’s Costa Blanca to film a brand new series of Benidorm.

“We’re going back in March to do another one,” he says. “It’s always enormous fun being part of that show and I can promise you Donald will be up to his usual shenanigans.”

The Cone Gatherers, King’s Theatre, Leven Street, Tuesday-October 27, 7.30pm, £14–£29.50 (£11–£26.50), 0131-529 6000