East Duplin High School won this year's Manilow Music Project contest. The contest asks bands across the country to submit videos about why they need extra funding.
East Duplin's video said the band's uniforms are 24 years old, they are unable to upgrade their instruments and many families are still recovering from Hurricane Florence.
Manilow named the winners Wednesday in a music video. He thanked East Duplin High School for "your passion, your heart and your talent."
East Duplin band director Thomas Seaman released the following statement about the victory:
I really cannot express my gratitude, with sufficient grace and appreciation, to all of those who have helped with this project. From the students who put together our video, the parents who got the word out to local news outlets, the teachers who had their classes voting daily and the greater areas of Duplin and Onslow Counties, I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. It's not just the money you have helped us to win but the lives you all have touched, just by showing your support. I am completely awed at the way people came together to show their support for the East Duplin High School Band. Know that we all feel the love and well wishes that have come from around the country as well as other corners of the world. I could not be happier to be anywhere else!!