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'Voice' contestant Michelle Chamuel greeted by fans in Northampton

  • Michelle Chamuel visits Woodstar Cafe in Northampton during filming for "The Voice" June 6.<br/><br/>GAZETTE FILE PHOTO

    Michelle Chamuel visits Woodstar Cafe in Northampton during filming for "The Voice" June 6.

    GAZETTE FILE PHOTO Purchase photo reprints »

  • Michelle Chamuel cheers with her friends and fans in front of Woodstar Cafe in Northampton during an interview. Chamuel returned to Northampton for a visit on June 6, 2013. She is a finalist on the television singing competition, The Voice.<br/>AYRIKA WHITNEY

    Michelle Chamuel cheers with her friends and fans in front of Woodstar Cafe in Northampton during an interview. Chamuel returned to Northampton for a visit on June 6, 2013. She is a finalist on the television singing competition, The Voice.
    AYRIKA WHITNEY Purchase photo reprints »

  • Libby Staples (right), 9, and her sister Maya Staples, 13, of Northampton eagerly wait with their mother, Roz Torry, in front of Woodstar Cafe for Michelle Chamuel. Chamuel is a finalist on the signing competition The Voice and returned to the cafe in Northampton for a visit on June 6, 2013.<br/>AYRIKA WHITNEY

    Libby Staples (right), 9, and her sister Maya Staples, 13, of Northampton eagerly wait with their mother, Roz Torry, in front of Woodstar Cafe for Michelle Chamuel. Chamuel is a finalist on the signing competition The Voice and returned to the cafe in Northampton for a visit on June 6, 2013.
    AYRIKA WHITNEY Purchase photo reprints »

  • Cake for Michelle Chamuel sits on the counter of Woodstar Cafe in Northampton. Chamuel was employed at the cafe before appearing on The Voice. The cake was made by Rebecca Robbins, owner of the Woodstar Cafe. Chamuel visited the cafe on June 6, 2013.<br/>AYRIKA WHITNEY

    Cake for Michelle Chamuel sits on the counter of Woodstar Cafe in Northampton. Chamuel was employed at the cafe before appearing on The Voice. The cake was made by Rebecca Robbins, owner of the Woodstar Cafe. Chamuel visited the cafe on June 6, 2013.
    AYRIKA WHITNEY Purchase photo reprints »

  • Michelle Chamuel visits Woodstar Cafe in Northampton during filming for "The Voice" June 6.<br/><br/>GAZETTE FILE PHOTO
  • Michelle Chamuel cheers with her friends and fans in front of Woodstar Cafe in Northampton during an interview. Chamuel returned to Northampton for a visit on June 6, 2013. She is a finalist on the television singing competition, The Voice.<br/>AYRIKA WHITNEY
  • Libby Staples (right), 9, and her sister Maya Staples, 13, of Northampton eagerly wait with their mother, Roz Torry, in front of Woodstar Cafe for Michelle Chamuel. Chamuel is a finalist on the signing competition The Voice and returned to the cafe in Northampton for a visit on June 6, 2013.<br/>AYRIKA WHITNEY
  • Cake for Michelle Chamuel sits on the counter of Woodstar Cafe in Northampton. Chamuel was employed at the cafe before appearing on The Voice. The cake was made by Rebecca Robbins, owner of the Woodstar Cafe. Chamuel visited the cafe on June 6, 2013.<br/>AYRIKA WHITNEY

The night before, the 27-year-old barista had sung “God Bless America” at the Red Sox game in Fenway Park.

But Thursday morning, she was happily back on her home turf greeted with a warm welcome by about 100 people who gathered on Masonic Street and inside the café to await Chamuel’s arrival. The crowd was made up of fans who’d never met her, as well as café staff, customers and friends who knew Chamuel before her talents became nationally known on television.

Woodstar staff wore T-shirts with “Michelle” airbrushed on the front and “Keepin’ it Real” on the back. Dmitri Robbins, co-owner of the café with his wife, Rebecca, also wore Chamuel-style black-framed glasses “in solidarity.”

Northampton residents Jen Fleming-Ives and her father, Peter Ives, both regular customers of the Woodstar Café, said they knew Chamuel from when she served them at the café and turned out Thursday to show their support.

“We’re very proud that she got so far,” Ives said. “When someone serves you coffee, it’s hard to imagine them being such a famous singer on national TV.”

On “The Voice,” currently in its fourth season, vocalists from across the country compete while being mentored by music star coaches Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Usher and Shakira.

After coaches select their team members in the first stage of the competition, artists are eliminated over the course of the season through the coach’s judgments and by vote of the audience.

Chamuel, the sole remaining member of “Team Usher,” was declared one of the top five contestants on Tuesday night’s episode. Holly Tucker, of “Team Blake,” was eliminated after receiving the least amount of votes from the audience.

The other artists in the top five are Sasha Allen, of “Team Shakira;” Danielle Bradbery and The Swon Brothers, both of “Team Blake” and Amber Carrington of “Team Adam.” The footage shot at Woodstar Café will air on next Monday’s show, when the five remaining artists perform for a place in the top 4.

Chamuel’s friends and family say she is a humble person. Staff at the café said they had no idea of the level of her talent before they watched her perform on television.

Patrons at the World War II Club on Conz Street in Northampton got a glimpse of Chamuel’s considerable talents as a singer last summer. Chamuel’s friend, Jesse Lindsey, said Chamuel blew the crowd away one night in karaoke with a rendition of “All the Single Ladies.”

“The whole place went crazy,” Lindsey said. “Probably the height of everyone’s evening was her performance.”

Lindsey, who lives in Amherst, graduated from Wellesley High School in 2003, the year before Chamuel graduated from there after having attended her junior year at Amherst Regional High School.

Other Valley residents discovered Chamuel by watching “The Voice,” and were excited to learn that she was an Amherst resident. Standing on the curb, intently watching the road for the arrival of Chamuel’s vehicle, “The Voice” fan Maya Staples, 13, held up a sign she prepared that said “Welcome Home Michelle.” Staples was there with her sister, Libby Staples, 9, and their mother, Roz Torrey, all of Northampton.

“She’s really cool and individual,” Maya Staples said. “And has a really good voice.”

When Chamuel pulled up and stepped out of a black van, “The Voice” camera crews waited inside, while the crowd screamed as she approached the café. Shouts of “Yeah Michelle” could be heard among the cheers. Chamuel waved as the crowd gathered around the café entrance, leaving a pathway for her to walk as “The Voice” crew filmed.

Inside, Woodstar Café co-owner Rebecca Robbins, wearing a T-shirt with the message “Vote for Michelle” ironed on, presented Chamuel with a gluten-free chocolate cake with musical notes in the icing.

“My heart’s bursting with admiration for you,” Rebecca Robbins said. “I want you to know, you are the total package,” she added before they embraced as the crew filmed.

“I love your glasses, Dmitri,” Chamuel called to Dmitri Robbins.

Chamuel remarked that while working at Woodstar, she developed muscles, which she said she has “since lost.” She’s been off the job since battle rounds began on “The Voice” around April 15.

“Seriously, the cameras should be on everybody who works here,” she said, before expressing her concern over whether people were able to get their sandwiches from the café.

Maya Staples, standing off to the side, handed Chamuel the sign she made.

“Thank you so much, I love this,” Chamuel said to Staples.

Chamuel’s mother, Dr. Joalie Davie, who now lives in Santa Fe, N.M., stepped outside and reconnected with friends from the Valley, including Amherst resident Karen Loeb, who had showed her around the area when Davie and Chamuel first moved to Amherst in 2002.

Davie, who will fly to Los Angeles with Chamuel for next week’s episodes of “The Voice,” said it was “heartwarming” to see her daughter back in the Valley on Thursday.

“It’s her home,” Davie said. The Woodstar Café, she said, is “another family for her here.”

Lindsey said Chamuel is an inquisitive person who genuinely wants to know people. He said it makes sense that people who watch her on “The Voice” say they feel a connection with her.

“When you see her on TV, it’s really who she is that’s coming through,” Lindsey said.

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