Apparently, the cliche has held true for Frelinghuysen Middle School sixth-grader Hanna Neil–
The third time's the charm.
It will be during that third time the 11-year-old Morris Township resident performs Adele's "One and Only" in , on Feb. 29.
You can call Hanna an old hand at the Morristown's Got Talent audition game, having been turned away during its first two years, when she was only seven and eight.
She skipped year three and, all set to try out again last year, lost her voice at the last minute. It may have been the best thing for her, now that she is one of only 16 acts vying for the $1,000 top prize.
Of course, the money has never been part of the desire to get on that stage. "We didn't even there was a cash prize," Hanna's mother, Erica, said.
In her native Sweden, Erica said her family could never afford the instruments her daughter seemed to take to so naturally at such a young age. So she and husband George, a native of Scotland, have made sure their only child's musical talents have had the space and opportunity to flourish.
Hanna has taken advantage of such opportunities. Besides her voice, Hanna plays the piano (after outgrowing a keyboard she received several years ago), choir bells at , saxophone and oboe, which Erica noted Hanna picked herself. "She brought the oboe to bed with her," Erica said.
Rarely does one not see Hanna Neil either singing to a song in her head, on the stereo or coming from the earbuds to her iPod, which rarely leaves her side. "Music has always been a part of my life," she said.
So has a competitive nature and a personality that draws people in, her mother said. "Her personality really came out at ," Erica said.
"She's very outgoing," George Neil said.
"I just like being on stage, having people recognize me for doing something in town," said Hanna, who will be performing as Violet in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory on March 9 and 10 at Frelinghuysen Middle School.
Even though it took a few tries, and a few years, Hanna Neil said she's honored by being able to perform in Morristown's Got Talent this year. "It's quite amazing to be able to do this and to have the opportunity," she said.
The fifth-annual Morristown's Got Talent will be held Feb. 29 at the Mayo Performing Arts Center. For more information, check out our MGT 2012 guide.