Gualberto Castro in Las Vegas, Nevada c. 1981
Gualberto Antonio Castro Levario
12 July 1934
|Spouse(s)||actress of Mexican super hero films: Mil Mascaras, El Santo, Demonio Azul Altia Michel (1954-1960)|
Suzanna J. Edwards (1962-1968) (1970-1973)
Mariana Castro aka La Maga Marian, see La carabina de Ambrosio(1979)-(1984)
Maria Alejandra Walliser (1986-2003)
Alexis Cordova (2004-2006)
Gudrun Becker, present
|Children||Altia Castro Michel|
Gualberto Antonio Castro Levario (12 July 1934, born on Saint Juan Gualberto day, (St. John Gualbert, in English) in Mexico City) is of Mexican and Lebanese ancestry from his father side of the family and French and Mexican descent from his mother's side, Gualberto is a Mexican singer-entertainer best known for singing with Los Hermanos Castro aka ("The Brothers Castro") and for hosting the television program La carabina de Ambrosio. The late Arturo Castro, affectionately known as "El Bigotón", an actor, comedian and night-club entertainer, was Gualberto's uncle. Daniela Castro, popular Mexican TV actress, is Gualberto's 2nd cousin.
Castro began singing at an early age. He and his family, mother Julieta, father Antonio, and sister Julieta Jr., lived in the colonia Guerrero, Mexico City, Mexico; fortunately a singing teacher, Alejandro Algara, lived in the same building. “My father studied singing with the Algara; my father had a superior tenor voice,” said Castro. “In those days, opera was what was studied, but I chose romantic ballads because it was what my father sang and I began listening to his music very early in life,” Castro continued. Although Castro's father did not sing professionally, he wrote some of Castro's songs such as "Vanidosa" that Castro recorded on his smash hit "Qué mal amada estás" album. Even though Castro wanted to sing, he could not find a job as a singer. He began his artistic career as a backup dancer when he was 14 years old in the Teatro Blanquita, located in downtown Mexico City, Mexico. Castro's first cousins, Arturo, Javier and Jorge Castro had developed a singing group called The Castro Brothers. They invited Castro to join as a countertenor voice to harmonize with Jorge's superb tenor voice. The group sang in nightclubs and bars in Mexico City. An agent from New York heard the boys and contracted them to sing in New York City. Gualberto related: "when we got the contract to sing in New York, we thought we had become millionaires." However, when they discovered that living in New York was very expensive, "We were so poor," said Gualberto, that the four of us slept in one bed. Two of us slept with our heads at the foot of the bed and the other two of us slept with our heads at the head of the bed." In time, the Castro Brothers gained fame in the United States and began to tour the country. The quartet met with great success in Las Vegas Nevada, in more ways than one. Gualberto said: "We worked in a lounge that had showgirls. The girls would talk to us before they went on the stage, but they had nothing on their chests. We thought Las Vegas was wonderful."
The Castro Brothers were famous for their four part harmony with Gualberto’s countertenor / tenor voice often singing lead. Later, their first cousin, Benito Castro entered the group as a musician and a singer, but he gradually turned into a comedian like his late father, Arturo "Bigotón" Castro. They recorded numerous albums; one of their most famous hits, “Yo sin ti”, Video on YouTube written and arranged by Arturo Castro, became a popular song throughout Mexico and South America. Recently CBS has released a composite CD / DVD of Los Hermanos Castros singing and performing live filmed and recorded during the 1960s.
When returning to Mexico, Los Hermanos Castro decided to go their separate ways, each successfully developing a career in music. Gualberto embarked on a solo singing career, recording one album a year and appearing in numerous night clubs, theaters, movies and television; he was a long time emcee for the La carabina de Ambrosio a popular weekly television show during the early 1980s that co-starred the magician Beto "El Boticario" and dancer Gina Montes Video on YouTube. Castro has appeared on television, theaters and nightclubs with numerous entertainers such as Judy Garland, Paul Anka, Verónica Castro (no relation), Laura Zapata, and many more. Castro entered and won the fourth edition of the OTI Festival (Organización de Televisión Iberoamericana)award twice once in 1975 for "La felicidad" Video on YouTube Video on YouTube written by Felipe Gill and has received numerous awards and honors from Mexico, Argentina, Peru, Colombia and the United States. Most recently he received a lifetime award for singing and entertaining from the ANDA (Accociacion Nacional de Actores). On August 22, 2007, Gualberto celebrated 60 years as a singer / entertainer.
Controversial Album Cover
In 1980, Gualberto Castro’s mega song hit “Qué mal amada estás” by Roberto Cantoral, came out in an album with the same name as the hit. Gualberto and his wife designed the album cover with himself lying down between the shapely legs of dancers who stood in French cut leotards above him. The legs belonged to his wife, sister-in-law, and a friend of the family, who were all dancers. This was a take-off on Mickey Rooney’s stage production publicity of “Sugar Babes.” The album cover caused scandal in the conservative Mexican record market so much so the album sold out quickly and the lead song “Qué mal amada estás” became a big hit for Gualberto. Ten years later, CBS, the publisher of the album changed the album cover to a genetic photograph without Gualberto’s image. To this day, it is unknown why CBS changed the image.
Interview with Gualberto Castro
In a recent Television interview, interviewer Mario Pintor asked Gualberto Castro what he does to keep his singing voice intact after so many years of performances. Gualberto answered: “It is not magic to keep one’s voice, but with discipline. If you are a person who stays out late at night, drinks alcohol, smokes cigarettes, and carouses around, well, your singing voice will change tone, perhaps get graveled, and finally, you can’t sing. I use the paradigm of Tito Guízar: he was 90 years old and he was still singing in the same key as when he was young. At 90 years old he still could sing opera because he was a disciplined person. The same with Don Pedro Vargas, both of them died singing. Video on YouTube
Gualberto Castro v. NFL
In 2010, the NFL used Gualberto Castro’s signature song “La Felicidad” for a commercial promoting American football to Spanish speaking persons. The NFL did not need permission from Castro to use the song, but the NFL neglected to pay Castro royalties for the use of the song. on YouTube
Disputatious Interview January 24, 2013
During a PodCast interview, reporter Martha Debayle asked “How many times have you been married?” Gualberto paused, as if trying to recall, then said five times. Debayle replied, “Wasn’t it seven times?” When Gualberto was adamant with his count, Debayle began to ask questions concerning each marriage that he could remember. “I was very young,” Gualberto said, “When I married Altia “Mitchel” Herrera, she was a ballet dancer, later Suzanne Edwards, who was also a dancer. Then I lived with the actress Macaria for 6 or 7 years. She never wanted to marry me. … Next I married Alejandra Walliser, but she left, taking everything she wanted from the house, and went to live with her mother. Then I married an American girl, I am still so angry with her that I cannot even say her name because she took my Mercedes Benz. Now, I’m married to Gudrun Becker. We’ve been together for twenty-two years.” After researching legal documents, Gualberto forgot to mention that he married Suzanne Edwards two times and overlooked his marriage to Alexis Cordova. If it is true that he has been married to his present wife, Gudrun Becker for twenty-two years, then he must be a bigamist due to the fact that his divorce to Alejandra Walliser ended in 2003, and his marriage to Alexis Cordova ended in 2006.
Watch & Listen to Gualberto Castro Sing
- Saint James, Sterling, Gualberto Castro: Ghosts, Gangsters & Girls.