NSA valedictorian aims for career in music biz

Published 10:29 pm Friday, May 31, 2013

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy’s 2013 valedictorian, Christine Comer, tests the view audience members will have when the class of 2013 graduates Saturday. Comer will attend university in Nashville, where she hopes to land an internship, or even job, in the music industry.

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy’s 2013 valedictorian, Christine Comer, tests the view audience members will have when the class of 2013 graduates Saturday. Comer will attend university in Nashville, where she hopes to land an internship, or even job, in the music industry.

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy’s 2013 valedictorian is a musical soul setting sail to Belmont University in Nashville to study music and performance.

Christine Comer learned she had achieved academic top honors Tuesday evening.

“I was very excited,” she said. “It was kind of a surprise. I really didn’t know — I wasn’t sure.”

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NSA’s academic frontrunners are all good sports and would have offered mutual support no matter who received the honor, according to Comer.

“We are all very good friends, so we would have supported each other no matter who it was,” she said.

“I really don’t know how close it was.”

Comer cited Latin and government as her favorite subjects as a senior.

She said she likes the focus on current events in government, adding, “With the election … we were learning the facts and applying them to what was happening.”

Comer said she has been taking piano lessons for the longest time, but also plays percussion and saxophone.

Percussion is her main musical interest, she said, and she was the drum major in the NSA marching band.

“I think it relates to everyone, regardless of whether you are a musician or not,” Comer said of music.

“It’s such a unifying thing. It’s a great outlet to escape life.”

Comer, who has attended the school since the age of 3, has also pursued sailing during her latter time at NSA.

She helped found the sailing team, which she captained this fall, when it became a varsity sport. The team trains at Hampton Yacht Club.

Comer said she expects to miss her family a lot when she moves to Tennessee, but she looks forward to making new friends.

“I’m not going to Nashville because of the desire to be a country star,” she said. “I have a lot of respect for those people and their chasing their dreams … (but) the reason I want to go to Nashville is the (music industry) internships and business.”

Comer has won several scholarships, including the Belmont University: Faculty Scholarship, Wilson Percussion Scholarship, Bronco Federal Credit Union Scholarship, the Backstrom Memorial Scholarship Benefitting Children of Delta Pilots and the Delta Award of Excellence.

NSA teachers have always been “caring and supportive, and always challenged me to keep achieving,” Comer said.

Her advice to rising seniors: “Find something you love and get after it with all that you’ve got.”