Hamlet
The Rep – St. Louis

Hamlet

by William Shakespeare | Repertory Theatre of St. Louis - 2017
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Press

“It has taken the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis 51 years to get around to Hamlet. It was worth waiting for. …as the Danish prince, Jim Poulos gives the kind of performance that we go to the Rep in hopes of seeing: supple, articulate, heartbreaking. …Poulos’ animated take on Hamlet impels him to take command of the whole stage. …Poulos leaps up steps and flings himself to the ground; he collapses into the arms of his troubled mother, Gertrude (Robynn Rodriguez), and seizes his beloved Ophelia (Kim Wong, in a tender, girlish performance) in tight embraces, even as he tries to drive her away with his words. …Poulos gives us the romantic Hamlet of the great soliloquies. …the play belongs to Hamlet, the kind of romantic hero you want to protect or maybe to love. This entirely valid interpretation makes “Hamlet” the revenger’s tale into “Hamlet” the tragedy.”

—Judith Newmark, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Unapologetically dramatic and thrilling in its pursuit of justice, Hamlet finally arrives at the most prestigious theater in St. Louis. It’s his first visit ever to the Repertory Theatre, in 51 seasons. And he’s alive and kicking, under the direction of Paul Mason Barnes. Which is not to say this newest Hamlet, Jim Poulos, is unsubtle, or overly dramatic—he knows when to go deep inside, and when to come out fighting as well, though it’s more often a war of nerves. But it’s also a pleasure to hear Shakespeare’s great introspective monologs flow beautifully from his mouth in quieter moments. Still fitted with a college boy’s bawdy sense of humor, and awestruck mind, this Hamlet is (of course) also replete with a young man’s idealism. Every new turning point in the plot presents him with a new moral landscape. He also gets in a remarkably full repertoire of sexual jokes, more or less within the bounds of the script. …There’s a whole lot of invention in this particular prince, making him deeply lyrical, but also a reckless, threatening sprig of a man-child. And the investment of character and circumstance all across the stage (in just under three hours) is highly impressive. For Mr. Poulos, in the title role, it is the kind of huge canvas that an actor dreams of, all his younger days. With the help of director Barnes, he takes full advantage of the opportunity, sometimes as a sort of Jackson Pollock, painting the stage with chaos. But just as often, in the quieter moments, he’s a Vermeer, a master of psychological clarity and quiet perspective. We don’t ask, so much, “Is he mad?,” because of course others see the towering ghost of his noble father, too. But we may ask, “Is he a good young man, in a reckless time of life, cursed with an awful circumstance? Or is he always going to be this way: a bad boy, blessed with a poetic heart?”

—Richard T. Green, Talkin’ Broadway

“Jim Poulos brings something slightly wacky and different to his exceptional performance as Hamlet. It’s a surprisingly off-beat portrayal that’s even a bit comical at times, perhaps a reflection of the madness in Hamlet’s method. But the humorous moments only appear to mask his deeper resolve to see justice served. The characterization is still angst-ridden, introspective, and tortured, but Poulos makes his Hamlet seem vibrantly emboldened as well, with a renewed sense of purpose as a result of his ghostly encounter, and you’re with him all the way.”

Chris Gibson, BroadwayWorld.com

“Murder and madness drive The Rep’s electrifying and eloquent interpretation of ‘Hamlet’ …Jim Poulos immerses himself in the language of the story, his body expressing every emotion and motivation with energetic, purposeful movement. Even when deep in thought or lost in madness, his actions are certain, his intentions clearly defined. Poulos easily handles the language and nuances of the script, and conveys much with a pointed gesture or lift of an eyebrow. His Hamlet is bristling in his quietest moments and his rages often contain witty observations and knowing glances. …a thoroughly engrossing dive into the language of Shakespeare with active, beautifully crafted scenes that are likely to have your heart racing.”

—Tina Farmer, KDHX

“Jim Poulos plays the title role triumphantly, swinging from laughter to frenzy at the drop of a hat, but there’s nothing contrived about it. …The story is about the fine line between deep grief and madness, and Poulos manages to show that delicate balance with a great deal of skill. …This is The Rep’s first take on Hamlet, and I think the Bard himself would smile on the production. It commands the full range of emotion he must have intended, from both the players and the viewers.”

—Julia M. Johnson, Town & Style

“I was hoping for a classic, yet freshly delivered production. If you are hoping for the same experience, then you are in luck, because that’s what you will get. …Jim Poulos, who is apparently no stranger to tackling Shakespeare at The Rep, will give you a Hamlet that is loveable, devilishly sarcastic, cunningly mad, and so tortured that you cannot help but thirst for revenge along with him. He is constantly “on”; a physical manifestation of grief and madness. He is Hamlet as it should be. His dry wit and asides to the audience bring much needed comic relief to this nearly 3 hours of wonderful emotional exhaustion.”

—Jacqueline McGarry, Limelight

“Jim Poulos is a most unusual Hamlet but one that works well and spreads less gloom and more madness than any interpretation we’ve ever seen. From doing bicycling type exercises to stalking and taunting and even mimicking those around him, he pulls it off with a great dose of angst and anger mixed in. Carrying on like that for the almost three hour production must be exhausting but what an incredible performance.”

—Steve Allen, Stage Door St. Louis

“Poulos brings us a particularly puckish portrayal of the Melancholy Dane. His Hamlet is thoughtful, but he’s also confrontational, witty, and full of dynamic energy, challenging baffling Claudius and crew with his actions and body language as much as, if not more than, his words. It’s a brilliantly visceral performance. …It could be easy to ask why it’s taken so long for the Rep to produce Hamlet, but it’s also easy to say now that I can’t imagine how they could have done it better. Particularly in its casting and fast-paced staging, this is a Hamlet that is confrontational and majoring on emotion, with a truly remarkable title performance at its heart. It’s a theatrical triumph for the Rep.”

— Michelle Kenyon, Snoops Theatre Thoughts

“Poulos’ physical acting is energetic, his delivery at times rapid-fire, the effect sometimes downright comedic, which doesn’t really feel incongruous. He’s young, he’s driven, he’s smart – no wonder he’s irresistible, even in the midst of all this.”

—Joe and Ann Pollack, St. Louis Eats and Drinks

Credits

Hamlet
by William Shakespeare
Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Director: Paul Mason Barnes
Set Design: Michael Ganio
Costume Design: Dorothy Marshall Englis
Lighting Design: Lonnie Rafael Alcaraz

All Photos: Peter Wochniak

Cast: Noah Benjamin Cornwell, Ross Cowan, Jeffrey Cummings, Jonathan Gillard Daly, Harrison Farmer, Tarah Flanagan, Esmeralda Garza, Christopher Gerson, Carl Howell, Stephen Hu, Cassandra Lopez, Ben Love, Ben Nordstrom, Larry Paulsen, Delaney Piggens, Jim Poulos, Michael James Reed, Joshua Roach, Robynn Rodriguez, Scott James Smith, Chaunery Kingsford Tanguay, Jerry Vogel, Kim Wong

h

Press

“It has taken the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis 51 years to get around to Hamlet. It was worth waiting for. …as the Danish prince, Jim Poulos gives the kind of performance that we go to the Rep in hopes of seeing: supple, articulate, heartbreaking. …Poulos’ animated take on Hamlet impels him to take command of the whole stage. …Poulos leaps up steps and flings himself to the ground; he collapses into the arms of his troubled mother, Gertrude (Robynn Rodriguez), and seizes his beloved Ophelia (Kim Wong, in a tender, girlish performance) in tight embraces, even as he tries to drive her away with his words. …Poulos gives us the romantic Hamlet of the great soliloquies. …the play belongs to Hamlet, the kind of romantic hero you want to protect or maybe to love. This entirely valid interpretation makes “Hamlet” the revenger’s tale into “Hamlet” the tragedy.”

—Judith Newmark, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Unapologetically dramatic and thrilling in its pursuit of justice, Hamlet finally arrives at the most prestigious theater in St. Louis. It’s his first visit ever to the Repertory Theatre, in 51 seasons. And he’s alive and kicking, under the direction of Paul Mason Barnes. Which is not to say this newest Hamlet, Jim Poulos, is unsubtle, or overly dramatic—he knows when to go deep inside, and when to come out fighting as well, though it’s more often a war of nerves. But it’s also a pleasure to hear Shakespeare’s great introspective monologs flow beautifully from his mouth in quieter moments. Still fitted with a college boy’s bawdy sense of humor, and awestruck mind, this Hamlet is (of course) also replete with a young man’s idealism. Every new turning point in the plot presents him with a new moral landscape. He also gets in a remarkably full repertoire of sexual jokes, more or less within the bounds of the script. …There’s a whole lot of invention in this particular prince, making him deeply lyrical, but also a reckless, threatening sprig of a man-child. And the investment of character and circumstance all across the stage (in just under three hours) is highly impressive. For Mr. Poulos, in the title role, it is the kind of huge canvas that an actor dreams of, all his younger days. With the help of director Barnes, he takes full advantage of the opportunity, sometimes as a sort of Jackson Pollock, painting the stage with chaos. But just as often, in the quieter moments, he’s a Vermeer, a master of psychological clarity and quiet perspective. We don’t ask, so much, “Is he mad?,” because of course others see the towering ghost of his noble father, too. But we may ask, “Is he a good young man, in a reckless time of life, cursed with an awful circumstance? Or is he always going to be this way: a bad boy, blessed with a poetic heart?”

—Richard T. Green, Talkin’ Broadway

“Jim Poulos brings something slightly wacky and different to his exceptional performance as Hamlet. It’s a surprisingly off-beat portrayal that’s even a bit comical at times, perhaps a reflection of the madness in Hamlet’s method. But the humorous moments only appear to mask his deeper resolve to see justice served. The characterization is still angst-ridden, introspective, and tortured, but Poulos makes his Hamlet seem vibrantly emboldened as well, with a renewed sense of purpose as a result of his ghostly encounter, and you’re with him all the way.”

Chris Gibson, BroadwayWorld.com

“Murder and madness drive The Rep’s electrifying and eloquent interpretation of ‘Hamlet’ …Jim Poulos immerses himself in the language of the story, his body expressing every emotion and motivation with energetic, purposeful movement. Even when deep in thought or lost in madness, his actions are certain, his intentions clearly defined. Poulos easily handles the language and nuances of the script, and conveys much with a pointed gesture or lift of an eyebrow. His Hamlet is bristling in his quietest moments and his rages often contain witty observations and knowing glances. …a thoroughly engrossing dive into the language of Shakespeare with active, beautifully crafted scenes that are likely to have your heart racing.”

—Tina Farmer, KDHX

“Jim Poulos plays the title role triumphantly, swinging from laughter to frenzy at the drop of a hat, but there’s nothing contrived about it. …The story is about the fine line between deep grief and madness, and Poulos manages to show that delicate balance with a great deal of skill. …This is The Rep’s first take on Hamlet, and I think the Bard himself would smile on the production. It commands the full range of emotion he must have intended, from both the players and the viewers.”

—Julia M. Johnson, Town & Style

“I was hoping for a classic, yet freshly delivered production. If you are hoping for the same experience, then you are in luck, because that’s what you will get. …Jim Poulos, who is apparently no stranger to tackling Shakespeare at The Rep, will give you a Hamlet that is loveable, devilishly sarcastic, cunningly mad, and so tortured that you cannot help but thirst for revenge along with him. He is constantly “on”; a physical manifestation of grief and madness. He is Hamlet as it should be. His dry wit and asides to the audience bring much needed comic relief to this nearly 3 hours of wonderful emotional exhaustion.”

—Jacqueline McGarry, Limelight

“Jim Poulos is a most unusual Hamlet but one that works well and spreads less gloom and more madness than any interpretation we’ve ever seen. From doing bicycling type exercises to stalking and taunting and even mimicking those around him, he pulls it off with a great dose of angst and anger mixed in. Carrying on like that for the almost three hour production must be exhausting but what an incredible performance.”

—Steve Allen, Stage Door St. Louis

“Poulos brings us a particularly puckish portrayal of the Melancholy Dane. His Hamlet is thoughtful, but he’s also confrontational, witty, and full of dynamic energy, challenging baffling Claudius and crew with his actions and body language as much as, if not more than, his words. It’s a brilliantly visceral performance. …It could be easy to ask why it’s taken so long for the Rep to produce Hamlet, but it’s also easy to say now that I can’t imagine how they could have done it better. Particularly in its casting and fast-paced staging, this is a Hamlet that is confrontational and majoring on emotion, with a truly remarkable title performance at its heart. It’s a theatrical triumph for the Rep.”

— Michelle Kenyon, Snoops Theatre Thoughts

“Poulos’ physical acting is energetic, his delivery at times rapid-fire, the effect sometimes downright comedic, which doesn’t really feel incongruous. He’s young, he’s driven, he’s smart – no wonder he’s irresistible, even in the midst of all this.”

—Joe and Ann Pollack, St. Louis Eats and Drinks

Credits

Hamlet
by William Shakespeare
Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Director: Paul Mason Barnes
Set Design: Michael Ganio
Costume Design: Dorothy Marshall Englis
Lighting Design: Lonnie Rafael Alcaraz

All Photos: Peter Wochniak

Cast: Noah Benjamin Cornwell, Ross Cowan, Jeffrey Cummings, Jonathan Gillard Daly, Harrison Farmer, Tarah Flanagan, Esmeralda Garza, Christopher Gerson, Carl Howell, Stephen Hu, Cassandra Lopez, Ben Love, Ben Nordstrom, Larry Paulsen, Delaney Piggens, Jim Poulos, Michael James Reed, Joshua Roach, Robynn Rodriguez, Scott James Smith, Chaunery Kingsford Tanguay, Jerry Vogel, Kim Wong

The White Card – A.R.T./ArtsEmerson

The White Card

role: Eric | A.R.T/ArtsEmerson - 2018
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Press

“The world premiere of Claudia Rankine’s The White Card is a must-see event for Boston theater. …absolutely impeccable performances [from] the cast: Karen Pittman as Charlotte, Patricia Kalember and Daniel Gerroll as Charles and Virginia, Jim Poulos as Eric, and Colton Ryan as Alex.”

—Clinton Campbell, EDGE Media

“…an engrossing, dispiriting and raw examination of the fault lines between the races. The confrontations onstage are likely to land in our own conscious leaving much to reconcile. It’s not often that theater, as a looking glass, is this crystal clear.”

—Jared Bowen, WGBH

“The cast is uniformly terrific.”

—Michael Hoban, The Theater Mirror

“Playwright and poet Claudia Rankine steps boldly into the breach to begin a conversation and challenges us to stay in the room… Poulos shows that Eric is primarily an intellectual man of taste and out of his element when the family’s volatility erupts.”

—Nancy Grossman, Broadway World

“The cast navigates the wordy material well, and Rankine observes the details of white complacency with piercing vision.”

—Jeremy D. Goodwin, WBUR

“The actors’ skill and passion to tell this story were equal to the exalted level of artistry of Ms. Rankine, Ms. Paulus, and the rest of their visionary creative team. “

—Dr. Al Chase, The White Rhino Report

Credits

The White Card
By Claudia Rankine
A.R.T./ArtsEmerson
Director: Diane Paulus
Scenic Design: Riccardo Hernandez
Costume Design: Emilio Sosa
Lighting Design: Stephen Strawbridge
Projection Design: Peter Nigrini
Sound Design: Will Pickens
©Photo by Gretjen Helene Photography

Cast: Daniel Gerroll, Patricia Kalember, Karen Pittman, Jim Poulos, Colton Ryan

A Christmas Carol
DCPA Theatre Company

A Christmas Carol

role: Fred/Young Ebenezer/The Undertaker's Man |DCPA Theatre Company - 2017
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Press

“I’ve seen many productions of A Christmas Carol over the years, most of them pleasant in a Hallmark card sort of way, none of them memorable. So I’m trying to figure out just what makes this year’s A Christmas Carol, an annual offering at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, such an exhilarating experience. …director Melissa Rain Anderson gives full weight to the shadows in Dickens’s fable, as well as his message about the need for human goodness and generosity in an often grim and frightening world. This doesn’t mean the production is preachy or solemn, or that it lessens the story’s bright magic. ”

—Juliet Wittman , Westword

“Poulos brings warmth and dignity to Fred, who…represents an embodiment of the spirit of Christmas and of Christian virtue…”

—Bob Bows, ColoradoDrama.com

“…the entire production is inspiring…the large cast is without flaw.”

—Tom Jones, Tom’s Colorado Theater Reviews

Credits

A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens
Adapted by Richard Hellesen
DCPA Theatre Company
Director: Melissa Rain Anderson
Scenic Design: Vicki Smith
Costume Design by Kevin Copenhaver
Lighting Design: Don Darnutzer
Sound Design by Craig Breitenbach
Choreography by Christine Rowan
Music Direction and Orchestrations by Gregg Coffin

All Photos: Ken Huth and Collin Huth

Cast (2017): Hadley Brown, Latoya Cameron, Kevin Curtis, Michael Fitzpatrick, Peyton Goosen, Sam Gregory, Darrell T. Joe, Chas Lederer, Kyra Lindsay, Brody Lineaweaver, Chloe McLeod, Timothy McCracken, Chris Mixon, Grace Morgan, Leslie O’Carroll, Erik Pinnick, Daniel Plimpton, Jim Poulos, Max Raabe, Tristan Champion Regini, Augie Reichert, Helen Reichert, Jeffrey Roark, Marco Robinson, Christine Rowan, Shannan Steele, Jackie Vanderbeck, Brian Vaughn, Owen Zitek

 

Cast (2016): Daniel Berryman, Latoya Cameron, Kevin Curtis, Allen Dorsey, Napoleon M. Douglas, Jack Eller, Michael Fitzpatrick, Sam Gregory, Kyra Lindsay, Brody Lineaweaver, Lars Lundberg, Chloe Mcleod, Timothy McCracken, M. Scott McLean, Chris Mixon, Grace Morgan, Leslie O’Carroll, Jim Poulos, Wayne W. Pretlow, Max Raabe, Augie Reichert, Helen Reichert, Jeffrey Roark, Christine Rowan, Shannan Steele, Olivia Sullivent, Jackie Vanderbeck, Brian Vaughn, Owen Zitek

A Midsummer Night’s Dream
The Rep – St. Louis

A Midsummer Night's Dream

role: Puck | The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis - 2014
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Press

“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

Credits

A Midsummer Night’s Dream
by William Shakespeare
Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Director: Paul Mason Barnes
Set Design: James Kronzer
Costume Design: Susan Branch Towne
Lighting Design: Lonnie Rafael Alcaraz
Choreographer: Matt Williams

All Photos: ©Photo by Jerry Naunheim Jr.

Cast: Caroline Amos, Landon Tate Boyle, Michael Jean Dozier, Ian Erbe, Alex Godiner, Carl Howell, Ryan Alexander Jacobs, Alvin Keith, Adam Lendermon, Matt Luyber, Kern McFadden, Gracyn Mix, Jeffrey Omura, Jim Poulos, Michael James Reed, Andy Rindlisbach, Ben Stroman, Jerry Vogel, Bob Walton, Rebecca Watson

Clybourne Park
Geva/Cleveland

Clybourne Park

role: Jim/Tom | Geva Theatre Center/Cleveland Play House - 2014
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Press

“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

“‘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

Credits

Clybourne Park
by Bruce Norris
A co-production between
Geva Theatre Center and
Cleveland Playhouse
Directed: Mark Cuddy
Scenic and Costume Design: G.W. Mercier
Lighting Design: Ann G. Wrightson

All Photos: Ken Huth and Collin Huth

Cast: Kristen Adele, John Cummings, Skip Greer, Jessica Kitchens, Christian Pedersen, Roya Shanks , Daniel Morgan Shelley

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