CELEBRITY
08/09/2011 02:57 pm ET | Updated Oct 09, 2011

'The Glee Project' Cast-Off Hannah Talks TV Crushes and Fan Support

Each week HuffPost Celebrity will be chatting with eliminated contestants from Oxygen's new show, "The Glee Project," a reality series with a 7-episode arc on the hit show "Glee" on the line. We talked with Hannah McIalwain about her love of "Glee," the support of her fans and her televised crush on fellow contestant Damian.

How did you end up on "The Glee Project?"
I was on a break from college and on my couch watching TV. I saw a commercial for the open casting call in Dallas and I spent all of my savings and booked my flight right away. I auditioned with a couple thousand other people, and then got a callback and went to LA.

Was it worth spending your savings?
Absolutely! I literally just had enough money to buy my plane ticket, I had $5 left.

Have you done anything like this before?
On a whim I auditioned for "American Idol," but I didn't make it any further.

What motivated you to get into performing.
For me it's always been theater, I lived in my school's black box theater.

What do you take away from the show?
I had the time of my life, I built up confidence.

You worked with a lot of mentors. Who was your favorite?
My one on one session with Jenna (Ushkowitz) was great. But meeting Dot Marie Jones was the most fun, she came to our video shoot that week. It was a really hard week for all of us and she was so supportive.

We have to ask about the Damien crush. Have you guys talked about it?
He absolutely knew I liked him on the show. It was a known fact. It was one of those unspoken things. We've talked about it, we work better as friends.

We think that friendship really came through in the clip of you clipping his nose hairs.
That's what good friends do. Good friends pluck friends nose hairs.

Who's your favorite to win now?
Honestly, they are all so incredibly talented. Any of them would be a great part of "Glee."

Were you a "Glee" fan before the show?
I've been watching Glee since the first commercial. Kurt is definitely my favorite character on the show, he embodies everything people should strive for. And he's so amazing, he has a great voice. I'm basically in love with him.

How do you respond to all the fans who supported you?

I see this opportunity as a way to share my story and hopefully inspire people to share their dreams and go after them. I get so many stories that people say I inspire them to perform and do something they didn't think they can do. that means the world to me, that's all anyone can want, to be a role model for other people. I really have the best fans, I'm really overwhelmed any time I look on my Facebook or my Twitter. It's been a great experience.

What are your plans now?
I live in LA, i moved here about 2 months ago. Hopefully I'll start going to auditions and start my career up soon. Before the show I wasn't really a singer, I just sang in my shower mostly. I found a love for singing and recording on the show.

You could have a future in rapping. You were a pretty good rapper on the show.
I think that would be really fun, I really enjoy rapping. You never know!