Ask a child what they want to be when they grow up, and most will give the typical answers: actress, astronaut, singer, etc. That is unless you are junior Lucy Quinn, who is anything but typical. Had you asked Quinn, she would’ve told you that she wanted more than anything to be a motorcycle.
Anyone who knows Quinn has learned to expect the unexpected. Quinn, who is in band, drama and choir¾ clubs known for being rather eccentric and intense¾ tends to fit the stereotypes well.
“Growing up, my brothers pushed me down the stairs a lot,” Quinn said. “Maybe that’s what’s wrong with me today: all the stair incidents.”
Quinn has two older brothers, Sully and Simon, both of whom she switches between adoring and wanting to strangle, just as any siblings do.
“If I ever talked about friends or boys, they would be very protective,” Quinn said. “But at home, that was the least of their worries as they beat me up—repeatedly.”
Quinn is the daughter of an artist, so growing up much of her time was spent in her father’s shop, where she used his scraps to make her own inventions. This taught her the adventure of making things.
“[The inventions] never worked, but my imagination told me they did. I was a failure,” Quinn said. “I had dreams of making spy contraptions that of course never worked. Broken hopeless dreams that my mom gave to the DI. The DI stole my dreams.”
As she has grown up, her inventions have assisted her as she got into building sets for the drama club.
Like other kids, Quinn liked to play pretend, although she was much more committed to the roles she played than most. Mr. Grandpa was a character Quinn adopted one afternoon, an old man who needed a cane. Quinn used him to get out of cleaning her room, claiming her frail body couldn’t handle the expression.
“We’d say, ‘Are you going to clean your room?’ and she’d say, “I can’t. These knees don’t bend any further than this. I’m going to go blend me some prunes,’” said her father Jason Quinn.
Another afternoon her father came downstairs to find her up against the wall, her face painted like that of a clock, and cardboard used to make her arms look like the hands of the clock.
“She must’ve been there for about a half an hour, waiting for me to come downstairs.” Jason Quinn said.
Now that she is older, characters like Mr. Grandpa and the clock still make appearances at the Quinn house, but she has also moved on to help create characters in NS’s drama productions. She has played major parts in Little Shop of Horrors as a Doo-Wop girl and Elaine Harper, the love interest, in Arsenic and Old Lace.
Looking back on her life, Lucy Quinn sees her biggest influence in her parents. Her father gave her a love for saxophone and the arts. And her mother gave her her work ethic and values.
Before Lucy Quinn was born, her mother was in a car accident that left her paralyzed in her back and left leg.
“[My mom] has been through a lot, and her courage inspires me,” Lucy Quinn said. “She always says she would do it all again if it takes one more hardship away from her kids. Her courage and kindness is amazing.”
Her brothers have also had a profound impact on her.
“If you ask most people about me, they will say just like Simon, except girl, if even that,” Lucy Quinn said.
Despite their similarities, there is of course a sense of competition between her and her siblings.
“My life motto is, “Do better than Sully and Simon,’” Lucy Quinn said. “I wanna get better grades than them, get better ACT scores than them, achieve more than them. I’m the youngest. I have a lot to live up to, except not really because they suck.”
Her family all shares a similar quirkiness and humor.
“[We are] plagued with insecurity, but overwhelmed with talent,” Jason Quinn said.
But Lucy Quinn isn’t a two dimensional sitcom character, she has more depth than just her humor.
“She is extremely driven. When she makes a commitment, you know she means it,” Jason Quinn said. “It’s a form of character really.”
Courage is not something Lucy Quinn lacks. When faced with conflict, she takes it head on.
“She and I have a side by side we like to ride up towards Power Plant Park, the wind in her face, tears streaming down her cheeks, and her mouth wide open, spitting, gagging and screaming all over the road almost killing us,” Jason Quinn said. “That’s a good example at how Lucy faces life, just full bore.”
Lucy Quinn prides herself on her ability to be a bright spot wherever she is and to be a good friend.
“I hope [my purpose] is to improve others lives, to change someone’s day,” Lucy Quinn said. “I don’t want to do disappoint people; I want to go above and beyond in everything I do.”