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Zing went the strings
Cellist tunes up for futureBy Sean Thomas
Just listing all of Hanna Osteen's activities and achievements is exhausting.
While traveling with the football team, competing in state competitions on her cello and lettering in academics, she still manages to attend cosmetology classes every morning and then drive back to Amarillo High, where she finishes classes with straight A's.
"I don't sleep much," Osteen says, laughing.
"She's a great student. ... She's self-sacrificing. She's marvelous," said Roger Edwards, who is the orchestra director at AHS. "She has an incredible attitude about everything that we do. ... She's one of our better students."
Born and raised in Amarillo, Osteen, 18, started playing the cello six years ago, moving on from the piano and viola.
"I think it's the prettiest," said Osteen, who plays in the AHS Philharmonic and the Symphony Strings. "It's rich, not squeaky."
Even with all the experience, Osteen says she still gets nervous when competing. She received an "Outstanding" rating at the Greater Southwest Music Festival this month for a solo and work in a quartet.
"I get really nervous playing in front of somebody," she said, adding she prefers to play in a group. "You're not just there by yourself."
Osteen was nominated by Tina Hare, who was her mentor in the Pearls program, which pairs mentors with teenage girls.
"When I was nominating her, I couldn't even think of all the things she has done. She is just a great, great student," Hare said. "She is just a really good kid."
Hare said she is used to most teenage girls being focused on material things, but that Osteen is focused on her career, school and future.
Osteen lettered in academics her senior year, orchestra twice and even football. Osteen and several other girls got out of taking physical education classes by videotaping games and practices for the football team, traveling with them and attending pep rallies.
This fall, Osteen plans to use her music scholarship to attend Amarillo College, where she said she will study music education.
"I want to teach elementary, like little kids, because after that they get annoying," Osteen said.
Celebrate Education is a yearlong community project to encourage lifelong learning and help raise the education level in the Texas Panhandle.
Editor's Note: The Amarillo Globe-News is profiling a student a day from May 9-29 as part of its 2008 graduation coverage. Students were nominated by Globe-News readers.
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