ARCHBOLD -- One of the most popular singers in the history of "American Idol" will make a rare stop in rural northwest Ohio this weekend.
Jason Castro, fourth place finalist on the seventh season of the hit television show in 2008, will perform in concert Saturday at 7 p.m. at Archbold Evangelical Church. The church is located at 705 Lafayette Ave., just west of Archbold High School.
"We are really excited about Jason's appearance here in Archbold," said Rick Yoder of the host church. "We believe he will appeal to a broad range of people of all ages, including those who do not attend church. Yet, we know Jason is someone who will present a good message to go with his considerable musical talent."
Tickets are only $5 each and they will be available at the door. There is no reserved seating and the doors open at 6:30 p.m.
"Our church can seat 1,000 people for this concert, so there are plenty of seats available," said Yoder. "This is not a money maker for us. We have intentionally priced the tickets so most everyone can afford to attend. All area residents and visitors are welcome."
Castro, 24, is a native of Texas and son of Columbian immigrants. During his high school years he played competitive soccer and was an honor student, scoring a 1340 on his SAT.
He had no formal voice training before auditioning for American Idol as a junior majoring in construction science at Texas A&M University, where he was attending on a full academic scholarship. In fact, he had previously sung only five times in public, mostly during church services.
Audiences around the world remember Castro for his stirring rendition of the song "Hallelujah," which he performed on American Idol show. The song skyrocketed to No. 1 on the iTunes singles chart.
After his "Idol" experience, he made appearances on "Live with Regis and Kelly," "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," "The Ellen Degeneres Show," "Access Hollywood" and "Larry King Live." He also signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records and his self-titled debut album was released in April, 2010.
Castro, who has sported dreadlocks since his senior year of high school, grew up playing drums and taught himself to play the guitar in college. He also plays the ukulele, which he used while singing "Over the Rainbow" on the Idol show.
His newest album, "Who I Am," includes the hit single "You Are," which has been extremely popular on contemporary Christian music radio stations nationwide.
He is married to the former Mandy Mayhall and the couple currently resides in Dallas with their daughter, born seven weeks ago.
Former area resident and Nashville vocalist Seth Bible, whose parents reside in Bryan, will open for Castro on Saturday night.