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Meet the Men of Lady Susan

The Stageworks' production of Jane Austen's "Lady Susan" opens on April 19th. Today, we're highlighting two of the actors bringing the show to life this month! Go behind-the-scenes and learn more about the actors playing Charles Vernon and Sir James Martin.

"Lady Susan" runs from April 19th to May 5th. Click here to get your tickets today!

Timothy Eggert as Charles Vernon

Tell us about your character in the show.

Charles Vernon is the nineteenth century patriarch of Churchill, an English countryside manor. He operates a banking-house in London and has done well for himself, his wife and six-year old son, but is a bit lonely. His wife Catherine forbids him from visiting family, especially his sister-in-law who once gave advice that nearly prevented their marriage. The circumstances of the play bring Charles' family and others to stay at Churchill instead. Charles is quite a bit more gregarious than me, so he's thrilled to have a house full of guests, despite having to comically play referee between Catherine and his relations.

What is your process for bringing your character to life?

I guess it's an unconscious process for me, but one of the first things I do is read and take note of everything other characters say about my character. Especially from the scenes I'm not in. I build from there, trying to play equivalent honest moments I can draw from in my own experiences. Then I work in physical aspects based on the life and times of the character. For Charles, I try to sit up straight and walk tall as an English banker in 1800 would. Sounds easy but my real life posture has never been very polished. We've been working with an excellent vocal coach, and the accent is another layer.

What is your favorite Jane Austen story?

Clueless, lol!

Tell us about one of your pre-show superstitions or rituals.

Before opening night, I try to physically touch every seat in the theatre.

How did you get started in theater?

I did a lot of acting in middle and high school, but I went to college thinking I was going to be a filmmaker. For whatever reason I just didn't find the way forward on that. All the while I think there were signs that "you should be acting," but because I didn't take those feelings seriously I got started really late in acting as an adult. One autumn in my 30s there was a show I really wanted to be in (The Lion in Winter), but because I had zero confidence in my abilities I auditioned for the show before it just to see if I could even act. Good thing I did because I got cast in that show, and in the next one (which is what I really wanted), and I've had some fantastic roles ever since.

What is your favorite play or musical?

Hmm. As far as plays, probably Jean-Paul Sartre's No Exit. I love the eerie simple setting and just the feeling that the pasts of these characters get exposed with no hope of redemption. As far as musicals, Chess or City of Angels. No one ever does those, but they're both amazing shows.

What is your favorite role you've played?

On-stage? I don't know if I could choose one. I don't know if I could choose one even for the four shows I've done at Stageworks. I've been very fortunate as far as casting.

What's your dream role?

My dream role is and always will be the titular Time Lord in Doctor Who. I can't imagine I will ever play him/them on British television, but I was extremely fortunate to play the Doctor for seven years at the Texas Renaissance Festival. I've been a Whovian longer than much of our cast has been alive! Others would probably be Hamlet, or Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors, but I feel like I've aged out of those now. Ooooh, I almost forgot I would absolutely rock the Spock/Data character in a new Star Trek series. Whatever character reflects the audience's humanity by not being human themselves. Every Star Trek cast has one.


  • Salty or sweet? Both, often in the same dish!

  • Beach or mountains? I haven't spent much time in the majesty of mountains, so probably beach... but I don't beach well. I would be terrible at that job, so neither.

  • Playlists or podcasts? Playlists. I have dozens of them, but there are some podcasts I enjoy when the mood strikes.

  • Text or call? Text. Like, always. I will never call you if I can message you instead. [stares in introvert]

  • Comedy or horror? I know I've copped out a bit by saying "both," but I honestly enjoy both, and I absolutely love seeing these genres combined. The original Ghostbusters is one of the greatest movies ever made. (But space opera is probably my single favorite genre.)

  • Waffles or pancakes? Waffles at home, pancakes when out.

  • Movies or TV shows? TV shows. You get longer to develop characters and usually tell better stories.

  • Early bird or night owl? Constantly tired pigeon? I guess I'd rather stay up late than wake up at even a reasonable time, but I don't consider myself a night owl.

  • Physical books or eBooks? Physical books for anything collectible or illustrated, but I read faster on a Kindle. Not sure why.

  • Board games or video games? Solitaire, lol. [again stares in introvert]

Jody Koster as Sir James Martin

Tell us about your character in the show.

I play Sir James Martin, a very rich man who has never had a care or worked a day in his life. Which is fortunate for him, because he is quite daffy and would certainly not survive in the real world. He thinks of nothing but following his passions: food and the lovely Lady Susan. But at heart, he is a caring and sweet man.

What is your process for bringing your character to life?

I tend to watch movies set in the same time period to get an idea on mannerisms and speech patterns. By the time we open, I'll pretty much have watched every Jane Austen adaptation there is. And because of the silliness of the character, I've also been watching a lot of Monty Python.

What is your favorite Jane Austen story?

I'm actually new to Jane Austen so I'm not familiar with all of her works but so far, my favorite has been Northanger Abbey.

Tell us about one of your pre-show superstitions or rituals.

I have to say all of my lines out loud before every performance. It can be pretty time consuming when I've got lots of lines. Fortunately, that's not the case for this one...

How did you get started in theater?

I knew from an early age that I wanted to act. Unfortunately, I didn't have too many opportunities when I was growing up to explore that. I didn't do my first play until I was in college.

What is your favorite play or musical?

Favorite Play: Angels in America; Favorite musical: The Rocky Horror Show

What is your favorite role you've played?

Harry Roat in "Wait Until Dark" last year on the Stageworks stage.

What's your dream role?

Harry Roat in "Wait Until Dark" 


  • Salty or sweet? Sweet

  • Beach or mountains? Beach

  • Playlists or podcasts? Playlists

  • Text or call? Call

  • Comedy or horror? Horror

  • Waffles or pancakes? Ugh! Neither!

  • Movies or TV shows? Movies

  • Early bird or night owl? Night Owl

  • Physical books or eBooks? Physical books

  • Board games or video games? Video games

"Lady Susan" opens April 19th and runs through May 5th. Click here to buy your tickets.

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