“I would give up all my success for one moment from my childhood.”
Javier “Poty” Castillo came into this world just a few days after his mother lost another of her children. A cruel twist of fate that led to this young boy from Torrelavega, Cantabria growing up with a “commitment” to making sure those around him were always happy, and to sharing joy and good humour with everyone he met. Being known as “quitapenas” (the comforter) became his great legacy.
Extroverted and restless, it soon became clear that he wanted to be a dancer.
Extroverted and restless, it soon became clear that he wanted to be a dancer. But it was not until he was 20 years old and in the military that he decided, after receiving a phone call from his mother, to sign up to the Superior School of Ballet in Torrelavega.
He was too tall and too old to be a dancer, so they predicted him a lousy future and a short career, but they would be proved wrong. After passing the entrance exam for the Royal Conservatory of Dramatic Arts and Dance in Madrid, he secured his place in the National Lyric Ballet, where he stayed until the end of 1991.
As a choreographer, he won the gold medal in 1993 for the Spanish Rhythmic Gymnastics Team, an achievement that catapulted him to television and kickstarted his 11-year career at Antena 3. He became the network’s Managing Director of Choreography and began working for renowned national and international artists, such as Mariah Carey, Miguel Bosé,
Chayanne, Paulina Rubio and Will Smith. As he himself has publicly stated, it was by complete chance that he happened to be in front of the camera on the talent show “Lluvia de estrellas” (Stars in their Eyes), presented by Bertín Osborne. His success with audiences led him to take part in the reality tv show “Operación Triunfo”, where the Cantabrian stood out as one of the most iconic teachers.
His fame and charisma took him from one show to another, forming part of the jury on competitions such as “Mira quien baila” on Televisión Española or “Tu Cara Me Suena” on A3.
His trail of success crossed the Atlantic to reach the United States, where it seemed he was already just as popular as in Spain.
Poty was surprised to be immediately recognised upon arriving to the new continent… until he realised that he was being mistaken for somebody else! The public would constantly greet him or stare at him, confusing him with famous singer Camilo Sexto. This confusion soon became a funny anecdote, as Poty quickly managed to win over the American public, even bringing in the New Year from New York’s famous Times Square.
Asimismo, durante dos años seguidos, es la cara de Nescafé, dándole el relevo a Ricky Martin, que es la imagen actual de la conocida marca de café.
A pesar de tantos logros, Poty asegura que la suya ha sido una carrera dura en la que ha llegado a romperse dos veces cada pie y en la que el trabajo constante ha marcado el compás de su coreografía vital. Para él, la danza es su vida y no hay nada que le emocione y le haga sentir más que ver y practicar, sobre todo, ballet clásico.
Para él, la danza es su vida y no hay nada que le emocione y le haga sentir más que ver y practicar, sobre todo, ballet clásico.
Echando la vista atrás , este hombre alegre y acogedor, no duda un instante en cambiar todos sus éxitos por volver a su infancia y verse en su humilde hogar, rodeado de sus hermanos y del amor de unos padres y unos abuelos que siempre lo animaron a ser bailarín, porque sabían que así sería un hombre feliz.