Fast Facts

  • Childhood nickname was "Unco," short for uncoordinated.
  • Dropped out of college to travel; worked as a grape picker in Germany and as a gold miner in Australia.
  • Speaks German, French and Italian.
  • Crowned Mrs. New Zealand in 1989.
  • Attended the William Davis Centre for Actors' Study in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, in 1991. 
  • Thrown from a horse and broke her pelvis while taping a skit for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno in 1996.
  • Awarded New Zealand's Order of Merit in 2006.
  • Her singing career includes the song Little Child on the 2006 album Unexpected Dreams: Songs From the Stars, a 2007 single called Come to Me and live concert performances at venues such as the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood.
  • In 2009, she costarred in the Web series Angel of Death with Zoe Bell, the woman who was her stunt double on Xena: Warrior Princess.
  • Embraces her gay fans, who consider her character Xena a lesbian icon, as well as her geek fans, explaining that "geeks have given me my career."
  • Described her role of Lucretia on Spartacus: Blood and Sand as "challenging" because she tends "to go in a comedic direction" when acting.
  • Is a board member of the Starship Foundation, which raises funds for the Starship Children's Hospital in her hometown of Auckland, New Zealand; in 2010, she donated several of her Xena: Warrior Princess outfits to an auction to raise money for the foundation.


  • Robert Tapert — Husband
  • Frank Ryan — Father
  • Julie Ryan — Mother
  • Daisy Lawless — Daughter
  • Garth Lawless — Ex-husband
  • Judah Miro Tapert — Son
  • Julius Robert Bay Tapert — Son


  • Attended University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

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  • Birth Name: Lucille Frances Ryan
  • Birth Place: Mount Albert, Auckland, New Zealand
  • Birthday: March 29, 1968, Aries
  • Profession: Actor
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