FutureStars 2023 Profile: Pioneer’s Chava Klayman is creating her own path, her own way

Read original article at: www.weloveannarbor.com

When Chava Klayman walked out on stage at last year’s FutureStars, the talented singer belted out an incredible version of Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.” It was incredible not only for the performance but also because Klayman considers it “one of the most memorable performances of my life.”

Then she adds, “so far.”

“Don’t Stop Me Now” could also be a theme song for the Pioneer senior who will take the stage on Saturday at Pioneer Theatre Guild’s FutureStars 2023. There doesn’t appear to be anything that could stop her now from chasing her dream of performing, creating and entertaining.

“Performing helps me to empathize with other people,” she says. “I love studying other perspectives and emotions, and doing so through storytelling really tickles my brain. Working together with other people to block a narrative is something I could do over and over again.”


Klayman plans on taking her passion to the next level. She has already completed the audition process for studying musical theatre in college.

“Studying at Michigan has been a dream of mine since I’ve lived in Ann Arbor, so I’m hoping for the best,” she says. “I’ve also applied and been accepted at a few arts and science schools, and would love to study creative writing or a foreign language.”

Klayman, who first performed on stage in a local musical summer camp, and then in the musical Oliver!, has been singing for her family, caretakers, and the camera since she was a toddler. “I think I enjoyed the attention a lot as a kid, but as I continued to perform it became more about the process and craft,” she says. “Regardless, I’ve known I wanted to pursue performance since that first full musical.”

Her latest performance comes on Saturday at FutureStars 2023. She will be singing “Everywhere,” by Fleetwood Mac as part of a quartet, and “Creep,” by Radiohead. She says she is “very excited” to perform these iconic songs and give them here own spins – which is part of the challenge and process.

“A challenge with this type of music is making my version of the songs I sing distinct,” she says. “It’s hard not to internalize the vocal habits of the original singers and follow them note for note. It’s an uncomfortable challenge to break free from these habits, but one that I really enjoy! Deciding how to hold the mic and what to wear has really helped, and has been a lot of fun.”

This year, being her last at Pioneer, will be extra special.

“I’ve been watching FutureStars since middle school, and this year will be my first and only chance to perform as part of it on Schreiber,” she says. “I’ve looked up to my friends and family members’ involvement in their high school careers for years, and I hope to inspire other people the same way.”

Klayman has performed in more than 20 local musicals while growing up in Ann Arbor, though her favorites have been with PTG. She performed in Our Town her freshmen year and stuck with Les Mis through freshman year to the actual performance her junior year. Most recently, she was The Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods.

“Connor Casey (The Baker), Tessa Hanrath (Little Red Riding Hood), Emmanuel Morgan (Jack) – who are all performing in FutureStars as well – and I were all nominated for our performances in Into the Woods, and I’m really looking forward to the workshop and performance in Detroit that comes with the nomination,” she says.

Chava, 17, is the daughter of Rachel and Benjamin Klayman. She has a 3.94 GPA and is in the choir at Pioneer and is the arranger for the acapella group Sha Bop Shoppe. She also is a member of the DEI Council at Pioneer.

She says all of her interests outside of school revolve around the creative arts. “I love writing, drawing, reading, and spending time with my friends,” she says.

By Terry Jacoby