HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Music moves us. It is entertainment and inspiration. One performing arts center in Huntsville is helping young musicians achieve greatness, one beat at time.
The Huntsville Community Drumline has been performing all across north Alabama since the summer of 2010. Around 50 students, from 1st to 9th grade, have the chance to learn a skill. For their parents, it doesn’t cost anything.
The sound of drums fills the air both inside and outside of the Huntsville Community Drumline Facility on Jordan Lane. Students practice hard, twice a week under the guidance of an instructor. The students also help each other along the way. The goal is percussion perfection.
It’s the vision of Angela Walker. Stuart Bridges nominated her for Pay it Forward.
"She funded this program with her own monies," says Bridges.
Bridges met Walker through the Leadership Huntsville/Madison County program and was immediately impressed by her self-sacrifice and desire to serve kids.
"It says a lot of about her character, her passion for children, her passion for our community to give the kids an alternative to other after school activities,” explains Bridges.
With $319 secretly stashed away, WHNT NEWS 19 showed up at practice one day to surprise Walker.
"Oh my goodness!” shouted Walker.
After we exchanged hugs, we exchanged cash, which Walker says was just in time. The kids were in desperate need of leg rests to balance the drums when they play.
"Stuff falls off, equipment breaks," says Walker. "We’re a non-profit, so $319 will go a long way for us.”
A long way when it comes to operating expenses and enriching the lives of young people.
“They’re getting exposure, providing entertainment and then they’re working on a skill that gets them prepared for high school and college,” explains Walker. "It’s huge and that’s why I’m just so excited!”
Walker retired from teaching after 30 years in the classroom. She says starting the Huntsville Community Drumline was a spiritual calling that she had to pursue and it’s been very rewarding.