Jason Donovan stars in The Sound Of Music at Regent Theatre, Hanley

Jason Donovan might be becoming something of a theatre veteran but he insists it doesn’t get easier.

“I won’t lie to you, I thought it was going to be a little easier than it has been,” he said.

The 42-year-old Aussie heart- throb is currently starring opposite former Emmerdale star Verity Rushworth in the UK tour of The Sound Of Music, which is at Hanley’s Regent Theatre.

A ‘jack of all trades’, Donovan seems to be focusing more on musical theatre and making the stage his own.

And, as the iconic Captain Von Trapp, he’s had to work harder than ever.

“It’s been a challenging role,” he said. “He’s not Jason Donovan, not even an extension of that. It’s all very regimented, strict and disciplined and you have to come out with force. You can’t just wander on stage.

“But it’s a great challenge and I think I’m doing the character justice.

“I’ve never had problems working with children and it’s quite a pleasure. They don’t bring the big ego to work.

“And Verity’s great, I’m really enjoying working with her. She’s a great little actress and singer and she’s still young, so she’s got a good career ahead of her.

“There has to be a certain chemistry between the Captain and Maria because they fall in love and the chemistry between the two of us is great.”

Donovan became an 80s icon when he shot to the nation’s attention as Scott Robinson in Aussie soap Neighbours.

His on-screen romance with Kylie Minogue (playing Charlene) launched a career in pop music.

After something of a hiatus from the showbiz world, Donovan reminded us of what we’d been missing when he reappeared in ‘The Jungle’ in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! in 2006.

Album releases and stints on television in innovative soap opera Echo Beach followed, and now we find him on stage down the road.

Donovan said: “I’m embracing theatre and I enjoy it. It’s tiring and a big discipline – it’s not just a job.

“If that’s where my career is going then great. I do a job I love doing and been busy doing for nearly 30 years, so I must be doing something right.

“I’ve had self-doubts and good and bad days, but I’m paying the bills.”

Would he fancy another crack in the charts or being on film or television?

He added: “We all want to be something we’re not sometimes.

“There’s things I’d love to be doing, like writing the next big pop record and doing albums, and films and TV, but I know I can’t do everything.

“You’ve got to be careful about what you choose and think about how is the best way to go about it. You don’t rush into a decision.

“I’ve got people around me that help me make those decisions. Sometimes they’re not always right but you remind yourself that nothing in life is perfect.”

The Sound Of Music is at the Regent Theatre until March 5. Shows are at 7.30pm, with 2.30pm matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Tickets are from £20.50- £43. To book, call the box office on 0844 871 7649 or visit www.ambassadortickets.com/Regent-Theatre.