At Walker West Music Academy, music education is a tool for growth

Walker West
Musician William Duncan, left, who teaches piano, voice and organ, and Grant West talk about their lessons March 20 at Walker West Music Academy in St. Paul.
Jennifer Simonson | MPR News 2014

Music can be a source of healing, catharsis and inspiration. And it can also be used as a tool for learning, growth and building community. 

That’s part of the vision behind Walker West Music Academy, a St. Paul music school founded in 1988 by musicians Rev. Carl Walker and Grant West. The school provides affordable music education to children and young adults, and it is believed to be the oldest community music school founded by Black musicians in the U.S. 

Now, the academy’s executive director Braxton Haulcy is leading the school through a new transition: He is leading a campaign and he is working on plans for the academy to move to a new building. 

MPR News host Angela Davis sits down with Haulcy to talk about music education, and the history and future of Walker West. 


Braxton Haulcy is the executive director of Walker West Music Academy in St. Paul.

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