Read the original article with photos at weloveannarbor.com.
This is the fourth in a series of features on artists performing this weekend at Pioneer Theatre Guild’s FutureStars 2019 which returns for its 17th year at Pioneer High School’s Schreiber Auditorium.
When Greer Taylor talks about performing on stage, her words are filled with exclamation points. She loves to sing, she loves the stage, and her excitement shows through when she speaks of her passion.
“Some emotions and feelings I get right before I hit the stage are kind of indescribable,” said Taylor, a junior at Early College Alliance at Eastern Michigan University. “But if I tried to describe my feelings, I would say it feels like I am flying! I feel so at peace and so content and happy. I feel safe.”
Taylor will fly high on stage this week at Pioneer High School’s Schreiber Auditorium along with about 60 other high school students from throughout Ann Arbor when they compete to get to the January 26 Finals of FutureStars 2019, where talent comes together from a diverse group to sing pop songs in front of throngs of people.
It’s the 17th annual rendition of FutureStars, presented by the Pioneer Theatre Guild, to which Taylor belongs. It comprises two preliminary shows on Friday, Jan. 18; two more preliminary shows on Saturday, Jan. 19; and then the Finals on Jan. 26.
Each of the four preliminary competitions feature a musical theme: Beatlemania; #RESPECT Strong Women/Powerful Voices; Totally ‘80s and myTunes, hits from the past year.
Local talent explodes on the stage for all five shows, and Taylor can’t wait to be part of the excitement.
“In FutureStars this year, I am in three of the four (preliminary) shows,” she said. “I am singing ‘Dancing On My Own’ in the Respect show on Friday night, ‘Nothing Compares to You’ by Prince in the ‘80s show and ‘Shallow’ by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper in the myTunes show both on Saturday!”
Two of Taylor’s performances are solos, and she will perform “Shallow” with her close friend, Seth Dyer. The pair were Troy and Gabriella in “High School Musical” at Pioneer High School last year, “so we’ve sung together plenty of times!” says Taylor.
If Taylor seems a little over the top about performing, she has good reason. She has been excited about Broadway since she was born in New York City, where she lived until she was 8 years old. She was born to father Nick Coquillard and mother Elizabeth Taylor (no, not that Elizabeth Taylor), and she was a regular at Broadway shows as a child.
“When I was younger, I went to Broadway shows with my grandparents quite frequently so my passion grew from there,” Greer Taylor said. “I have never wanted to do anything else with my life! I want to do musical theater until the day I physically cannot anymore.”
Taylor is very goal-oriented when it comes to her performing because she has her sights set on Broadway. In order to get there, she knows there are steps she must take along the way.
“My goals after high school are to go to the Michigan School of Music Theater and Dance or one of my top 5 musical theater schools and pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theater,” she said. “I want to play Elphaba in “Wicked” on Broadway. I want to perform on Broadway until the day I die!”
Broadway is a long-term goal, but in the short-term, Taylor is concentrating on FutureStars 2019.
“I am so excited to perform this year, and I’m so excited to seeing everyone after the show,” she said. “I’m very thankful to PTG (Pioneer Theatre Guild) for facilitating this incredible experience for artistic youth.”
PRELIMINARY SHOWS, all tickets $10
Friday, Jan. 18
7 p.m.: Beatlemania
9:30 p.m.: #RESPECT Strong Women/Powerful Voices
Saturday, Jan. 19
7 p.m.: Totally ‘80s
9:30 p.m.: myTunes Top Hits from the past year
FINAL COMPETITION, Adults $15; Seniors, Students, PHS Staff $10
Saturday, Jan. 26
7:30 p.m. (Reserved Seating)
Tickets available at https://a2tix.com/organizations/pioneer-theater-guild or at the door the night of the shows.
By Jeff Barr