Lucy Lawless

lucy_bwLucy Lawless was born Lucille Frances Ryan on March 29, 1968, in Mount Albert, Auckland, New Zealand. She was the 5th of 7 children in Frank and Julie Ryan’s Irish Catholic family.  Lucy’s dad, Frank Ryan, became the mayor of Mt. Albert the year she was born.

Following her older brothers, Lucy was pretty much a tomboy until she was about 8 years old.  For two years she attended public school, then switched to convent schools.  Lucy enjoyed acting and appeared in many plays in high school.

Later, she attended Auckland University and studied German, Italian and French for a year.

Afterwards, Lucy left college and headed for Europe where she and her boyfriend, Garth Lawless, traveled around Switzerland and Germany where she picked grapes on the Rhine to earn travel funds “for about 3 seconds” she once said in a TV interview.

Lucy and Garth then went to Australia and got jobs with a gold mining company outside of Kalgoorlie, about 500 miles from Perth.  One of the very few women miners on the workplace, Lucy did the same hard work as the men – digging, mapping the ground, driving trucks, and pushing huge core samples of earth through a diamond saw.

Lucy and Garth were married in Australia in 1988.  They then returned to New Zealand where their daughter, Daisy, was born.

Lucy got her breakout role of Lysia in “Hercules and the Amazon Women” (1994) (TV). Shortly thereafter, the producers needed someone to play Xena.

Lucy was cast in the roll of Xena in 3 episodes of “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys” (1995)– “The Warrior Princess”; “The Gauntlet” and “The Unchained Heart”.  That role would lead to her own spin-off series, “Xena: Warrior Princess” which began airing September 4th, 1995.

Although Xena immediately got a huge fan following in America, ironically it wasn’t being shown in her native New Zealand, so Lucy didn’t find her tremendous popularity in her homeland until a while later.

(Lucy and Garth were also divorced in 1995).

In October 1996, Lucy came to America to appear on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. The plan was to make a grand entrance by having Lucy ride a horse in the parking lot. Unfortunately, the horse tripped on the cement and Lucy fell and broke her pelvis.  Other than this injury, Lucy was never seriously hurt during the 6-year production of Xena: Warrior Princess.

After recuperating and another season of “Xena,” Lucy returned to the US making her Broadway debut playing Betty Rizzo in “Grease” from September to October of 1997.

Lucy became engaged to the executive producer of Xena: Warrior Princess, Rob Tapert, also during the Fall of 1997 and they were married in Santa Monica, California on March 28, 1998. On October 16, 1999, they had a son, Julius Robert Bay Tapert, born in New Zealand.  Their second son, Judah Miro Tapert, has also joined the family as of May 7, 2002.

Lucy was once named by People one of the “50 Most Beautiful People in the World,” one of “TV’s 40 Most Fascinating Stars” and one of the “25 Most Intriguing People of the Year.” A highly trained singer, she studied opera for several years but her real passion is jazz.

Lucy is still doing a huge variety of things. She’s an activist, she sings and she acts. Check out her website.



Birth Name: Lucille Frances Ryan
DOB: March 29 1968
Birth Place: Mt. Albert, Auckland, New Zealand
Gender: F
Height: 5′ 10 1/2″
Eyes:  Blue
Hair Color: Dark Blonde
Lucy Can Speak: English, German, French and some Italian.

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