When we read Charles Castronovo’s Music Mix questionnaire, we could have sworn he was channeling a late-stage Baby Boomer pining for the glory years of Led Zeppelin. In fact, opera fans know Castronovo as an acclaimed young tenor who is currently juggling Don Giovanni at the Met and an evening of Neapolitan songs at 54 Below in support of his new CD, Dolce Napoli. Enjoy the handsome singer’s surprising answers below, and see him live at 54 Below on December 6 and December 8.
What record/album was your favorite growing up?
Definitely Houses of the Holy by Led Zeppelin.
What concert most influenced you as a performer?
A performance of Otello with Placido Domingo singing the lead role.
What is your go-to audition song?
“Una furtive lagrima,” from Donizetti’s Elixir of Love.
What song are you most excited to perform in your show?
Probably “Scetate (Descend).” It is a great, moody serenade that sounds almost out of Lawrence of Arabia.
What song gets you in the holiday spirit?
“O Holy Night.” For me, it’s the best Christmas carol.
What musical theater track is the most played on your iPod?
Not too much musical theater on my iPod, except Jesus Christ Superstar.!
If you could invite any performer onstage for a duet at 54 Below, who would it be?
Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin.
What musical theater performer from the past do you wish you could collaborate with?
What album was the soundtrack to your 20s?
Any Led Zeppelin album.
What’s your favorite love song?
“Woman” by John Lennon.
What song makes you feel sexy?
Any Sade or Prince song.
What is your favorite workout track?
“Back in Black” by AC/DC.
What’s the best hidden gem in on your iPod?
“Please, Please, Please” by James Brown.
Favorite break-up song?
“Back in Black” by AC/DC :-)
What song most makes you smile?
“Devil in Disguise,” by Elvis Presley.
When this song plays, I can’t help but dance:
“Rock With You” by Michael Jackson.