Watertown's Got Talent: Russo's Supermarket Employee Surprises And Serenades

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Guilherme “Gillie” Assuncao, who's 23, at Russo's in Watertown (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Guilherme “Gillie” Assuncao, who's 23, at Russo's in Watertown (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

This past weekend may have been life-changing for 23-year-old Guilherme Assuncao, or Gillie, as his friends call him.

On Friday night he was at his job at Russo's Supermarket in Watertown as the store was preparing to hold a holiday concert the next day. Gillie offered to do a soundcheck, so he started to sing.

Some of his coworkers thought he was lip-syncing. One of them began to cry realizing that Gillie has a passion — and a talent — for singing. So Gillie was invited to sing at the store's weekend concerts — and his performance went viral on social media.

He spent Monday fielding national and local media interview requests and offers to sing at events around Boston. Gillie says he's amazed by all the attention.

Gillie told WBUR that he feels as if he's walked onto the set of "America's Got Talent" at the supermarket. He's not professionally trained in singing, but he has sung in a performance of "The Phantom of the Opera" in Brazil.

Gillie came to the United States two years ago from his native Brazil. When school became too expensive for him in Utah, he moved to Massachusetts to learn about computer skills for small businesses. He works full time at Russo's, and he's only been in Boston for six months.

"I'm really shocked. I never thought this would happen for me, singing at work — at a grocery store," Gillie said.

Now because of this attention, he's thinking of a potential career in music. He'll be singing at Russo's this coming weekend.

Correction: Due to an editing error, an earlier version of this story said Gillie went to college in Brazil. We regret the error.

This article was originally published on December 18, 2017.

This segment aired on December 18, 2017.

Deborah Becker Host/Reporter
Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.



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