Courtesy Karin Sullivan, OPRFHS

Oak Park and River Forest High School senior Hannah Rand has been selected as the third place winner in the third annual GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares Teens! Make Music Contest. As a top winner, Hannah will attend the 55th annual GRAMMY Awards® Backstage Experience, a special backstage tour that takes place while artists rehearse for the live GRAMMY Awards on Friday, February 8, 2013.

The contest asked musicians between ages 14 and 18 to compose or create an original song and/or music video that explored, encouraged, and celebrated a healthful lifestyle or accurately depicted a story about drug abuse. Hannah’s song, “Starting Over,” exposes her concern for a friend who continues to abuse drugs. Hannah’s lyrics include an emotional plea to her friend to end her use: “There’s nothing you can take, nothing you can use, that won’t end up using you and taking you away from me. Please don’t go away from me.” To hear Hannah’s winning entry, click here:

In addition to attending the GRAMMY Awards, Hannah and the other winners are being honored by the GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares, the two nonprofit organizations of The Recording Academy, in collaboration with The Partnership at during the third annual National Drug Facts Week, January 28 – February 3, 2013. The week is coordinated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, part of the National Institutes of Health.

In addition to the GRAMMY Awards backstage experience, the winners will have their musical entries posted on the GRAMMY365 website and the MTV Act blog, as well as on the Above the Influence campaign website. The winners also receive prizes including iPads with the GarageBand app; an opportunity to release a record with Iron Ridge Road Recordings (proceeds will be donated to MusiCares), through Clarity Way, a drug and alcohol rehab facility in Hanover, Pennsylvania; a small cash award courtesy of the Visions Adolescent Treatment Center in Malibu, California; and a certificate from the GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares acknowledging their role in the dissemination of health information about substance abuse.

This isn’t the first time Hannah’s musical talent has made news at the high school. OPRFHS’s 34th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Assembly, held on January 18, 2013, featured the premiere of her music video “Not That Different,” directed and edited by fellow student Mary Alexander. Creation of the video was prompted by the positive reactions to an original song Hannah sang at last year’s assembly.

To see that video, click here:

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