The Boards – 13th September 2013

Edinburgh’s first regular Musical Theatre Cabaret night at Edinburgh Playhouse’s Cocktail Bar, the Boards.

**Unfortunately Freya Sutton will not be appearing tonight due to illness**


Luke Striffler

Luke is currently playing Link Larkin in the UK touring production of HAIRSPRAY.

Luke was born and raised in New York, USA and trained in London at The Central School of Speech and Drama.

Professional Credits: Avenue Q (UK TOUR); Edward Brooks (EastEnders); Thom (The Morning After) (Short); and Noctropia (Hampstead Theatre).

Luke is Represented by Felix de Wolfe.




Lauren Hood

Lauren is currently playing the role of Penny Pingleton in the UK tour of Hairspray.

Lauren was born and raised in Malton, North Yorkshire. As a young girl she attended Kirkham Henry Performing Arts Centre. Lauren was then offered a scholarship to attend Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts where she graduated with a First Class BA (Hons) degree and won the Gyearbour Asante Award for Acting.

Lauren made her professional debut playing the role of Carrie Pipperidge in the West End Production of Carousel, which she was nominated for a TMA award for. Other theatre includes Frenchy, cover Sandy in Grease (UK No1 tour), the leading role of L.V in Little Voice (Hull Truck); Gabriel in the Flint Street Nativity (Hull Truck); Laura in the UK Tour of Dreamboats and Petticoats and Martha in the UK and International tour of The Secret Garden.

Television includes Victoria Wood’s Christmas Special.


Nikki Pocklington

Nikki Trained at Mountview Academy of Theatre arts for 3 years where she was awarded the Peter Coxhead award and was sponsored by the BBC Performing Art Fund.

Roles whilst training include Sookie -The Witches of Eastwick, Ensemble- Parade, Marmee/Meg- Little Women, Seasons of Love soloist/ensemble- Rent. Nikki also danced in the closing ceremony of the London Olympics.

She is excited to be in the cast of the UK touring production of Hairspray for her professional debut.


Rhiannon Chesterman

Rhiannon is currently playing Shelly in the UK touring production of HAIRSPRAY.

Rhiannon is originally from Belfast. She trained with The MGA Company in Edinburgh for
one year before graduating in 2012 with a BA Honours degree in Musical Theatre from The
Arts Educational Schools, London. Upon leaving Arts Ed she joined Rupert Goold’s
production of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe at Kensington Gardens. She then
toured with Vienna’s English Theatre as ‘Maggie’ in the Ken Ludwig farce, Lend Me a
Tenor. Rhiannon is now playing Shelley in the Number 1 UK Tour of Hairspray, she also
covers and has played Tracy Turnblad in the same production.

Credits whilst training include: Singin’ in the Rain; Sweet Smell of Success; Ruddigore and

Rhiannon is also an alumni choir member of Northern Irish based charity, Music Theatre
For Youth. They recently had the privilege of opening the opening ceremony at The World
Police & Fire Games.

For more information please visit:


Piers Bate

Piers is currently playing Brad in the UK tour of Hairspray.

Piers recently graduated from The Arts Educational Schools, London (BA Hons in Musical Theatre).

Theatre credits include: Most recently playing Pish Tush in the Landor’s production of Hot Mikado, Jeff Bennett in I Love You Because (Jermyn Street Theatre), Backing Singer in Momentous Musicals (New Wimbledon Theatre).

Whilst training: Ensemble in Sweet Smell of Success, Leo Bloom in The Producers, Ensemble/Brian in The Concrete Jungle World Premiere.


Gavin Blackie

Gavin, 29, from north Edinburgh, is a keen performing artist and has been touring Edinburgh, Glasgow and Fife from the age of 14, and went on to win Edinburgh’s Got Talent 2010. Since then he has performed at the Radio Forth Awards along side the likes of Paulo Nutini and other chart-topping acts, as well as for various charity events.

Most recently he supported Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowell.