Joyce Castle

Joyce Castle
  • University Distinguished Professor of Voice
  • Voice & Opera

Contact Info

420 Murphy Hall
1530 Naismith Drive
Lawrence, KS 66045-3103



Joyce Castle as Mme. Armfeldt in A Little Night Music at the Houston Grand Opera. 
Joyce Castle as Mme. Armfeldt in A Little Night Music at the Houston Grand Opera. 

Since her professional debut at the San Francisco Opera in 1970, Joyce Castle (mezzo-soprano) has sung worldwide in opera, concert, musical comedy and cabaret.

A Grammy winner for her performance in Leonard Bernstein’s Candide, she was a leading artist at the New York City Opera for 25 seasons and at the Metropolitan Opera for 14 seasons. She has appeared with major opera companies in the United States including the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, Houston Grand Opera, San Francisco Opera, Seattle Opera and more. Summer festivals include:  Santa Fe Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Central City Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera and Chautauqua Opera.  She has performed in opera houses from the Gran Theatre del Liceu in Barcelona to NHK Hall in Tokyo, including performances in Belgium, Germany, Canada, Israel, Italy, Brazil, and in opera houses throughout France (where she lived seven years).

International concert engagements have included appearances at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Radio-Symphonieorchester in Vienna, the Accademia de Santa Cecilia in Rome, Orchestre Nationale in Paris and with the London Symphony Orchestra.

Conductors with whom she has performed are: James Levine, Seiji Ozawa, Raymond Leppard, Michael Tilson-Thomas, James Conlon, David Zinman, Marin Alsop. With Leonard Bernstein playing the piano, she sang the first performance of his work: Arias and Barcarolles.

Celebrated composers Jake Heggie and William Bolcom have written song cycles for Castle. She appeared in the premiere of Strawberry Fields by Michael Torke – Glimmerglass Opera, 1999. The performance was televised for Great Performances. This past year, for her Distinguished Professor Inaugural “Lecture” she directed and sang the lead in Strawberry Fields – here at KU with our talented singers.

Graduating from the University of Kansas with a B.F.A. in Theater and Voice (a major which was created for her), she began teaching here in 2001. Castle received her Master of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music and was their 2004 Distinguished Alumnus.