Press

“Unless a reviewer has the courage to give you unqualified praise, I say ignore the bastard.”
—John Steinbeck

“They say if you believe the good ones then you have to believe the bad ones too. And I do. You just won’t see any of the bad ones listed here.”
–Jim Poulos

Spamalot | Geva Theatre Center

Geva Theatre Center, 2015

“Poulos plays several singing and dancing roles, but is a show-stopper as Sir Robin whose bravery the Minstrels salute and who milks a lot of laughs from that song about Jews.”

—Herbert Simpson, Artes Magazine

“The actors, one and all, deserve acclaim for not over-milking the broadness of the comedy and simply immersing themselves in it. Jim Poulos [is] an uproarious and not-very-brave knight with an affinity for musical theater.”

—Marcia Morphy, Democrat & Chronicle

“Jim Poulos is an amazing actor to watch. I personally love the musical bit, “You Won’t Succeed On Broadway”, and Mr. Poulos performs this song with such confidence and grace.”

—Collin Arend, nytheatreguide.com

“…delightful as the cowardly Sir Robin…”

—Leah Stacy, City Newspaper, Rochester

“Complementary to the performance of Foster as King Arthur were those of Poulos as Sir Robin; DiSalvo as Sir Lancelot; Andrus as Sir Galahad; and Warrell as Sir Bedevere. The bellowing comedic tone that flooded the theater Saturday night belongs completely to these gentlemen, who clearly internalized and embraced their roles. At times, I had to remind myself that I was sitting in a playhouse, not in front of a screen because their performances were just that tight.”

—Nick Camardo, Cardinal Courier Online

puck philostrate
A Midsummer Night's Dream | The Rep

Rep Theatre of St Louis, 2014

“Jim Poulos ties everything together as Robin Goodfellow, also known as Puck. The sprightly actor bounds around the stage and works wonders seeming to do everything but pull a rabbit out of his hat. It’s a remarkable performance that steals a show that’s full of scene-stealing moments from everyone.”

—Steve Allen, Stage Door St. Louis

“Jim Poulos is sensational as the beguiling Puck.”

—Lynn Venhaus, Bellville News-Democrat

“Jim Poulos makes Oberon’s servant Puck both intelligent and fierce in arranging all the mayhem, even when he gets things hopelessly mixed up…Great double-casting at all levels here…”

—Richard Green, Talkin’ Broadway, St. Louis

“Jim Poulos is terrifically mischievous as Puck.”

—Malcolm Gay, Riverfront Times

“…played expertly by Jim Poulos…”

—Emily Scharf, PlaybackStL.com

“…standouts include Poulos as the engagingly mischievous Puck.”

—Michelle Kenyon (SnoopMK), SnoopsTheatreThoughts.com

“Jim Poulos delivers a fine performance as the naughty Puck, aka Robin Goodfellow.”

—Chris Gibson, Broadwayworld.com

“Barnes and his polished cast expertly ‘weave together’ the story’s separate threads.”

—Judith Newmark, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream at The Rep is truly a transporting production. Done with great love, care, energy, humor and beauty, this very determined show quickly engages the audience on a level of colorful imagination and whimsy that is irresistible. The production is uniformly funny…In the last scene, the character of Puck implores the audience in his epilogue to not be put off by the play’s unbridled flights of fancy. “Gentles, do not reprehend: if you pardon, we will mend.” Not a problem, Puck.

—Harry Hamm, KMOX – CBS St. Louis

Curtains | Arvada Center

Arvada Center, 2013

“Poulos offers a character to cheer as well as feel tender embarrassment for when he’s too much the fan, too little the cop.”
“When Niki and Frank are joined by the company in “A Tough Act to Follow,” it evokes the best of Fred and Ginger with a few friends.”

—Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post

“…there’s a gorgeous Rogers and Astaire-style duet, “A Tough Act to Follow,” which is equally gorgeously sung and danced by the lovely and graceful Erica Sweany as Niki and Jim Poulos’s light-footed Cioffi…. This duet provides such pure and dizzy pleasure that you want it to go on and on and on.” “The cast is very strong — good dancers, fine voices — with standout performances from Poulos, Sweany, Lauren Shealy as Georgia and Jeffrey Roark as Aaron.”

—Juliet Wittman, Denver Westword

“Jim Poulos as the detective is the perfect blend of giddy fan and hard-boiled detective.”

—Craig Williamson, North Denver Tribune

“…thanks to the fine performances of the cast and crew – an excellent and enjoyable evening of musical theatre. Jim Poulos was absolutely adorable as Lt. Frank Cioffi and impressive in his Arvada Center debut. The combination of his excellent accent, goofy investigative style and love of musical theatre stole the audiences hearts and he commanded the attention of the stage every time he was on. He also had a good voice as well and that was highlighted in Show People and A Tough Act to Follow.”

—Michael Mulhern, Broadwayworld.com

amad press
Amadeus | The Rep / Geva

Rep Theatre of St Louis, 2009

“Jim Poulos plays Mozart not as the foul-mouthed idiot savant of the film but as a likable lightweight in whose real-life existence it is no great strain to believe.”

—Terry Teachout, Wall Street Journal

‘Jim Poulos’ Amadeus is more nuanced than Mozart is usually portrayed. Of course he is energized, but Poulos also manifests an unspoken aura: His Amadeus somehow senses that he is the chosen one.”

—Dennis Brown, River Front Times

“What the play was truly better for–what it was outstanding for–was Poulos’ performance as Mozart. Brilliant, just brilliant. Expressive, fun, crass, desperate for his father’s approval, confident in his work, completely besotted by his wife, wistful for a more successful time as he loses all patronage (thanks to Salieri machinations), passionate about music as it is in his soul, weary and then accepting of Salieri’s friendship (and let’s not forget that wonderful infectious silly laugh–Poulos hit all the right notes (sorry for the pun–truly unintended but appropriate) as the complicated musical genius.”

—Bridget Klotz Kostello, the Stealth Critic

“Poulos’s descent from juvenile wildness to fevered madness charts a touching, plausible line.  Together, Long, Poulos and Stanley anchor director Paul Mason Barnes’ production, which also includes other sharp performances.”

—Judith Newmark, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Equally as remarkable are the interpretations by the show’s focal actors.  Jim Poulos brings an extra dimension to Mozart with his own expert musicianship at the keyboards.  He also excels at showcasing the composer’s baser side as well as his naivete concerning Salieri, and soberly conveys Mozart’s alarming physical and financial decline.”

—Mark Bretz, Laude News

“Top 10 of 2009, St. Louis: Amadeus received a superior presentation by The Rep under Paul Mason Barnes precise and thorough direction, with marvelous performances by Andrew Long as Salieri, Jim Poulos as Mozart and Joe Hickey as the affable if intellectually challenged Emperor.”

Laude News

“Jim Poulos as Mozart is remarkable, especially in Act II when he is shown sliding down the emotional slope to ruin that Salieri has so clandestinely plotted for him.”

—Harry Hamm KMOX-AM

“Jim Poulos as the bratty and hateful Mozart is outstanding. He too must move from this giddy know-it-all to a man driven mad by poison- literally and figuratively. His final moments are moving and poignant.’

—Steve Allen, KFUO-FM

Geva Theatre Center, 2010

“Jim Poulos as Mozart is frolicsome and naughty but equally convincing later in the play when the composer has lost much of his spirit and lives alone in poverty with only his need to write to keep him alive. Mozart says, “My tongue is stupid. …My heart isn’t,” and Poulos is never more effective than during a moving speech in which Mozart explains a composer’s responsibility.”

—Michael Lasser, Rochester City Newspaper

“He says he is better than any other musician in Vienna … and we believe him.
Jim Poulos delivers an equally compelling performance as Mozart, the endearing idiot savant who is a giggling, “gibbering monkey” one minute, a dedicated artist the next. Although he gives the impression that life is one glorious party, we don’t doubt for a second his brilliance—especially during his rebuttal to the self-absorbed Emperor Joseph (Brad Heberlee) who complains Mozart’s opera has ‘too many notes'”

—Marcia Morphy, Democrat and Chronicle

The Foreigner | John W Engeman

John W. Engeman Theater, 2009

“The actors at the Engeman seem to relish their roles, and their energy and enthusiasm help to buoy the play during its bleaker stretches. Among the production’s chief assets is Jim Poulos, who portrays the title character, a painfully shy Brit named Charlie Baker. Mr. Poulos demonstrates an unassuming grace that can transform a nebbish into an endearing hero.”

—Aileen Jacobson, The New York Times

“Jim Poulos, who created a sensation as Max in Engeman’s production of “Lend Me a Tenor,” once again struts his comic genius in his role as the likeable underdog, Charlie Baker. Even when bereft of words, Poulos’ face and body language speak volumes, and it’s both magical and hilarious.”

—Elise Pearlman, Times Beacon Record

rntm press
right next to me | Human Race Theater

Human Race Theatre, 2011

“Poulos, so marvelous in “Convenience” opposite Anderson, equally shines, fully conveying Michael’s conflicted nature and bringing heartfelt sincerity to his desire to follow David’s example and become a better man. He also winningly sings the Billy Joel-esque “Confirm/Deny” and [the] terrific title number, a quietly captivating song…”

—Russell Florence, Jr., DaytonMostMetro.com

“The four cast members all sing very well and create realistically flawed characters.  Jim Poulos (Mike) conveys the anger and confusion of both a grieving brother and a fellow Marine unable to adapt to life back stateside.”

—Scott Cain, Talkin’ Broadway, Cincinatti

assassins
Assassins | Arden Theater

Arden Theatre, 2008

“However the sheer brilliance of the Arden Theatre Company’s breathtaking production of Stephen Sondheim’s “Assassins” — in which Booth plays a major role — has nothing to do with luck. It has to do with skill and the sheer thrill of watching all the facets of a theater work coalesce into something approaching artistic perfection.”

—George Hatza, Reading Eagle.com

“Every pair of eyes at the sold-out performance I attended was riveted to the stage, owing in large part to the play’s brilliant casting. Nearly every number was a show-stopper.”

—Jillian Ashley Blair Ivey, the phyllyist.com

“This production has so much going for it; one is at a loss to think of any complaints. There is not a slack moment. The actors strut and stride about the stage, singing their hearts out. Each fully inhabits his or her strident, often desperate character.”

—David Lohrey, Curtain Up.com

“The cast is most impressive, due in large measure to the efforts of director Terrence Nolen…. there’s enough creative energy here to illuminate a city.”

—KYW’s Bob Nelson, WKYW News Radio 1060

“The casting and staging are terrific. All members of the cast were chosen for their physical resemblance to the characters and their singing and acting skills, and all are impressive.”

—Steve Cohen, Broad Street Review

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer | Broadway

Minskoff Theatre on Broadway, 2001

“Mr. Schlitz, a Grammy-winning composer of country songs (including ”The Gambler”), has written a handful of winning tunes, among them… ”It Just Ain’t Me,” a pleasingly defiant declaration by Huck (Jim Poulos). (Poulos’) duet with the Widow Douglas (Jane Connell), who is teaching him to read, is a highlight.”

—Bruce Webber, The New York Times

“Poulos shared the evening’s best showstopper with veteran musical comedienne Jane Connell. As the Widow Douglas, she tutors the illiterate Huck until he can joyously proclaim “I Can Read” – a sort of “Rain in Spain” moment that no audience could resist.”

—John Kenrick, musicals101.com

“Joshua Park as Sawyer and Jim Poulos as Finn are more than capable of setting an appropriately enthusiastic tone and carrying this musical without overshadowing the production itself.”

—Thomas Burke, Talkin’ Broadway

mercutio romeo and benvolio
Romeo and Juliet | Great River Shakespeare Festival

Great River Shakespeare Festival, 2015

“Both exuberance and inevitable destruction mark Jim Poulos’ dazzling performance as Mercutio. He is Romeo’s best friend, loyal to a fatal fault, but also a partier, jokester, and antagonist. Poulos totally captivates on stage, and it is in contrast to Mercutio’s testosterone-driven bravado that Romeo’s gentle and romantic persona is forged.”
“Doug Scholz-Carlson, Artistic Director of the Great River Shakespeare Festival, has directed this production—splendidly, ferociously—and, moreover, has added his considerable talent as a fight choreographer. …switchblades are the weapon of choice. The fight that ensues is thrillingly presented, both balletic and guttural.”

—Arthur Dorman, Talkin’ Broadway, Minneapolis

Clybourne Park | Geva / Cleveland Play House

Utah Shakespeare Festival, 2016

“…a cast whose timing runs like clockwork and who are always on the same page. …Groucho, Chico, Harpo and Penelope to do a hilarious routine with slamming doors that depends on split-second timing. …Plumpis, Poulos and especially Feldman, whose Harpo wants to eat and drink everything in sight, are completely in sync as the Marx Brothers. …Well-done farce requires discipline and perfect timing, and this production translates them into a very entertaining package.”

—Barbara M. Bannon, Special to The Tribune (Salt Lake City)

“The actors who must perform their characters in the style of Groucho (John Plumpis), Chico (Jim Poulos), Harpo (Tasso Feldman) and Zeppo (John Wascavage) all deserve ovations for the manner in which they capture the original group’s madcap personae. They were able to achieve this while also expertly executing the often intricate comic timing, pun-laden wordplay and physical comedy (and singing!) that the Marx brothers perfected – a sort of thinking-man’s Three Stooges. This is a skill much harder to pull off than it appears. Simple silly is easy; wily wit is hard.”

—Bruce Bennett, Cedar City News

“…the cast hits the musical notes as well as the comedic ones. It’s no easy task to inhabit the roles of much-loved icons, but by the end of the performance the players had embodied their roles so well, it was hard to recall the originals.”

—Shawn Rossiter, 15 Bytes

Clybourne Park | Geva / Cleveland Play House

Geva Theatre Center, 2014

“Directed by Mark Cuddy, Clybourne Park is a savagely funny, immersive, intimate, visceral, profanity-laced, emotional and superbly acted production.”

—Marcia Morphy, Democrat & Chornicle

“Mark Cuddy directs the Geva cast with great verve and sensitivity to the rhythms of Norris’s language: those stuttering repetitions really mean something. All the cast members do a fine job at changing from their 1959 characters to their 2009 equivalents…”

—David Raymond, City Newspaper, Rochester

Cleveland Playhouse, 2014

“‘Clybourne Park’ will offend you, delight you and, in the Cleveland Play House production under the direction of Geva Theatre Center artistic director Mark Cuddy, break your heart. The ensemble is especially good. The group of eight actors, seven of them playing dual roles, achieves perfect emotional pitch with a script that requires them to pivot from comedy to gut-wrenching tragedy with hairpin precision.”

—Andrea Simakis, The Plain Dealer, Cleveland

“How can an issue charged with deeply serious emotions be presented with so much humor? That’s what you’ll see in “Clybourne Park”… The cast, direction and physical production are all superb.”

—Art Thomas, WestLife, Cleveland

“…this production is as tight as a drum and the acting by Remi Sandri, Roya Shanks, Kristen Adele, Jim Poulos, Jessica Kitchens, Christian Pedersen, Daniel Morgan Shelley and Bernard Bygott is superb.”

—Bob Abelman, Cleveland Jewish News

“Directed by Mark Cuddy, the extremely intelligent, perfect-pitch Play House cast members embrace the deep, profound drama lurking behind every deceptively benign verbal exchange.”

—Howard Gollop, Chronicle-Telegram, Cleveland

“The cast is excellent.…I was fortunate to see Clybourne Park on Broadway and find the Cleveland production equally strong.”

—David Ritchey, Talkin’ Broadway.com, Cleveland

“Clybourne Park is the entire theater package. …great comedic moments… high drama… This is a great cast that gives its all to the performance. See this show.”

—Mark Horning, examiner.com, Cleveland

Company | Geva

Geva Theatre Center, 2012

“Bobby, played ingratiatingly by Jim Poulos, is malleable in the extreme…it’s easy to underplay Bobby and leave a cipher at the center of the show.  Despite Bobby’s diffident manner and his own white-bread looks, Poulos carries off the portrayal with authority, especially when he struggles to break free in the score’s great soliloquy, ‘Being Alive.'”

—Michael Lasser, Rochester City Paper

“There’s been lots of talk over the years of what a cipher Bobby is, and how he’s asked to do little but react to those around him. Cuddy was wise to cast Jim Poulos. The actor suggested that, like Christopher Isherwood and Cliff Bradshaw before him, he was a camera and that he could be likable…Poulos reiterated that Bobby is a single woman’s dream… This Bobby also seemed to be searching for the right thing to say.”

—Peter Filichia, MTI Marquee: Filichia Features

The Odd Couple | John W Engeman

John W. Engeman Theater, 2009

“Together, they’re a priceless pair. Mr. McGrath, spraying warm soda and scattering potato chips, does slovenly with extravagant flair. Mr. Poulos, with his hair slicked down (or “clenched,” as Oscar describes it), is a model of prim movements, except when Felix is trying to rid himself of his many ailments by wiggling his rear, kicking his legs or making the honking sounds that Oscar likens to moose calls. The actors get even funnier in the second act when they stumble through a double date with the Pigeon sisters, whose surname is designed for puns.”

—Aileen Jacobson, The New York Times

tenor - press
Lend Me A Tenor | John W Engeman

John W. Engeman Theater, 2007

“Although the John W. Engeman Theater at Northport set the standard for Long Island theater comfort the night it opened in May, it had yet to stage an unambiguously satisfying hit. Until now. With “Lend Me a Tenor,” the Engeman has done it, nailing one of the toughest genres to pull off. Jim Poulos as Max finds the balance between nerdy and determined.”

—Steve Parks, Newsday

“Jim Poulos and Catia Ojeda make such a cute young couple in Ken Ludwig’s farce “Lend Me a Tenor” that you really want things to work out for them. As the mild-mannered Max, an unappreciated opera underling, and the super-pretty Maggie, his reluctant girlfriend (she thinks she loves him, but she doesn’t hear bells), they give real heart to the John W. Engeman Theater production, which is itself as cute as a button.”

—Anita Gates The New York Times

lsoh
Little Shop of Horrors | National Tour

National Tour, 2006

“As Seymour, Poulos looks perfectly cowed. The florist’s crummy life would make anyone suicidal. All hunched over and worried, he scurries around the flower shop like a man well used to being harangued. But Poulos brings lots of wistful charm to the music, and he’s delightful in “Mushnik and Son,” which he sings with Wolpe’s Mr. Mushnik. The two men dance about and make the most of the duet.”

—Lee Williams, Houston Press

“With a star like Audrey II, it would be easy for the rest of the characters to pale by comparison. But thanks to Jerry Zaks’s surehanded direction and nearly perfectly cast actors, even the scenes without Audrey II are enchanting. Jim Poulos’ Seymour is a lovable wimp, an endearing nerd in glasses.”

—Tiffany Yates, Marco Eagle, Ft. Myers, FL

“Jim Poulos is a sweet, not-so-nerdy Seymour with a strong voice… A highlight of the show is Wolpe and Poulos’ song and dance number for “Mushnik and Son,” which features everything Hebraic to hilarious effect.”

—Mark S.P. Turvin, Goldfishpublishers.com, Tempe, AZ

“The humans in this show were pretty impressive, too. Thankfully, the cast sang and acted well opening night.”

—Channing Gray, The Providence Journal

nerds
Nerds:// A musical...

Philadelphia Theatre Company, 2007

“There’s not one weak performer… Standouts include Jim Poulos as the overexcited Gates…”

—Tim Dunleavy, Talkin’ Broadway

“It takes a lot to make me literally go slack-jawed… My mouth was open for five full minutes while I watched Bill Gates (Jim Poulos) and Paul Allen (Andrew Cassese) perform a rap about Windows. I honestly couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I don’t mean that in a good way or a bad way. I just didn’t know how to process it…. It’s got everything you could look for in a musical: an exceptionally talented cast, fun choreography, a clear conflict, and a happy ending.”

—Jillian Ashley Blair Ivey, The Phyllyist

Convenience | Geva Theater Center

Geva Theatre Center, 2002

“The cast has grown, the musical has grown, and our local theater’s nurturing has paid off in an enormously satisfying new work that should be picked up by theaters across the country. Jim Poulos sang and moved uncommonly well in the original version, [and] now inhabits the part with the same star-power but adds sensitivity and an involving edginess. People are going to want a recording of this music, especially with this cast.”

—Herbert M. Simpson, The City News

“Every actor is perfectly cast, with strong voices and equally strong acting.”

Democrat and Chronicle

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