Barry Manilow to Perform, Donate Piano (video)

By Eric DeFreeuw

February 22, 2013 Updated Feb 22, 2013 at 7:40 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) – Barry Manilow is coming to the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum in April, and he comes bearing gifts.

His organization, "The Manilow Music Project" is donating a brand new Yamaha piano to Fort Wayne Community Schools, which is something he’s done before. While on tour, Manilow makes donations to school districts that support music and the arts.

And that’s not all.

Manilow is also starting a music instrument drive where he encourages the public to donate instruments to the schools as well. He is asking for any new or gently used instruments to be brought to the Coliseum through the date of his show, April 18th.

"This is something that is really difficult for us to purchase in the quantity that we need,” says Fort Wayne Community Schools spokesperson Krista Stockman. “We have 50 schools and they all want musical instruments, they all need instruments. So it's just one of those things that's an expense that we want to put money into, but it's really hard to keep up and to maintain."

In exchange for the donations, he is giving away two free tickets to his show.

Fort Wayne Community Schools is accepting instruments of all kinds, and promises to put them all to good use.

Stockman adds, "a lot of schools in recent decades have had to cut a lot of their art and music programs. We really haven't. We've maintained our commitment to those programs because we know their value. We know that being involved in music, having an appreciation for the arts is good for our students. So we've maintained our commitment to those programs. But at the same time it is really difficult because musical instruments are expensive."

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