When it comes to school, Taylor is more than just an intelligent, outgoing and athletic student at Modesto Christian High.
She not only maintains a 4.17 GPA, but is on the varsity basketball and softball teams at her school, as well as a travel basketball team. When not on the basketball court or softball field, she also likes to play her saxophone. In fact, she has been playing the saxophone longer than she has known how to shoot a jump shot or run from the left side of home plate.
As a middle school musician, she began performing with Modesto's Ernie Bucio in venues throughout the Central Valley. Since then, she has gone on to play with such jazz greats such as Plas Johnson, Jon Faddis, Mic Gillette and the late Maynard Ferguson.
Taylor's study of jazz saxophone led her to study for two summers at the University of the Pacific's Brubeck Institute for Jazz while refining her chops.
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Additionally, she spent two years as a member of the Stanislaus Youth Jazz Ensemble, where Matt Pivec, coordinator of jazz studies at California State University, Stanislaus, mentored her.
During the summer, you can also hear Taylor perform at the Barkin' Dog Grill in downtown Modesto on various weekends. However, during whatever free time she does have, you can usually find her volunteering at a local dental office or at Gottschalks Music Center.
PARENTS: Ben and Pat Cuthbertson
SIBLING: Ethan, 15
HOBBIES: Listening to music, playing my saxophone, hanging out with friends, playing basketball, talking on the phone and sleeping.
BIGGEST INFLUENCE: Shannon Bobbitt. She is a 5-foot-2 point guard who ended up making it to a Division I university.
LAST BOOK READ FOR PLEASURE: "Things Fall Apart," by Chinua Achebe
FAVORITE TV SHOWS: The "Real Housewives" series and "Secret Life of the American Teenager"
FAVORITE MOVIES: "Love & Basketball," Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Cinderella" and Tyler Perry's series of movies.
FAVORITE MUSIC: Hip-hop: Drake, Wale, Nicki Minaj and Lil' Wayne. R&B: Trey Songz, Monica, Chris Brown and Marques Houston. Jazz: Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington and Charlie Parker.
BIGGEST FEAR: Not being the best I can be in life.
WHAT I'D TELL THE PRESIDENT: There should be more funding for the middle class to attend college because there isn't enough and college keeps getting more and more expensive.
ADVICE FOR KIDS: Prioritize; do your homework, get good grades, work hard in everything you do and have fun, because in the end, it will pay off with rewards.
ADVICE FOR ADULTS: Parents, I know you may not think that we teenagers hear you the first time, but really we do. You guys should not repeat yourselves so much.
WHERE I'LL BE IN 10 YEARS: I'll be just turning 26, so I'm hoping to have graduated dental school and starting to work as a dentist, but who knows ...
-- CHRISTOPHER RENTERIA/TEENS IN THE NEWSROOM