Jim Souza is one of those rare individuals who understands both the “show” and “business” sides of show business. He learned showmanship from his father, using the magic of fireworks to create the “oohs” and “aahs” that make people happy. Like his great grandfather, “Papagaio,” Jim Souza continues to expand his family’s legacy, now spanning five generations as America’s Fireworks Family™.
Through the years Jim has risen through the ranks to become the President and CEO of one of the world’s largest fireworks display companies, Pyro Spectaculars by Souza. Under his leadership and creative vision, the company has become recognized as America’s premiere pyrotechnic production company. Today, the company stages over 400 shows on the 4th of July including the nations largest display, the Macy’s Extravaganza in New York City, as well as hallmark spectaculars in Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Hawaii.
The company has also produced fireworks and special effects for several prestigious events including many Olympics Ceremonies, the Statue of Liberty Celebration, several Super Bowls and international shows in Hong Kong, Japan, Europe and Africa, as well as world tours for the Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd.
Jim Souza is considered the pioneer of the new era of fireworks productions, first creating Pyro Musicals using patriotic music and American history to tell the story entitled, “the American Adventure” in fireworks! In 1976, he was creator of the Sky Concert®, fusing the ancient art of fireworks with music broadcast over radio airwaves. These two types of show are now worldwide industry standards.
As a respected businessman, Jim not only serves at the helm of Pyro Spectaculars by Souza, but has also served two terms as President of the American Pyrotechnic Association, and was recently the recipient of the APA’s Life Time Achievement award. Jim is also on the NFPA pyrotechnic committee and the California fireworks advisory board.
His passion for unique show designs and creativity in multiple media has led Jim to design award-winning fireworks shows in Montreal, Japan and Germany. He has been featured in People magazine, on numerous television shows including the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, the Today Show and in countless newspaper and electronic media articles.
As a connoisseur of fireworks, Jim has traveled the globe searching and developing new colors and innovative special effects. He cites Golden Kamuros, Happy Faces and Twinkling Stars as his favorite shells.
He is very proud of his two sons, Paul and Christopher, who are following in his footsteps as the “Fifth Generation” of the Souza Tradition.