She is known for portraying Raviva on the 2012 series Underemployed, Vee on the 2014 series Gang Related, and Sheba on the series Prison Break. She also starred in the 2017–18 television series Imposters.
Lavi was born and raised in Ramat Gan, Israel. Her parents are both Israeli-born. Her mother is of Sephardic Jewish (Moroccan-Jewish) descent, whereas her father is of Ashkenazi Jewish (Polish-Jewish) descent. As a child, she suffered from asthma, and had to use a nebulizer for 45 minutes at a time. During that time, she watched movies, and "fell in love with cinema". One of her early inspirations was the performance of Israeli-American actress Natalie Portman in Léon: The Professional. Another of her role models was Israeli actress Ayelet Zurer.
Lavi studied ballet and modern dance at the Kiryat Sharet high school in Holon, Israel. She then studied acting at the Sophie Moskowitz School of Acting in Tel Aviv.
In 2004, at the age of 17, Lavi moved to New York City, where she performed in various off-Broadway productions. After eight months, she moved to Los Angeles, after being accepted with a full scholarship to the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute. Among her earliest English-speaking roles was Cordelia in a 2006 production of King Lear, starring and directed by Tom Badal.
Starting in 2009, Lavi began making guest appearances on television shows including Entourage, The Closer, Ghost Whisperer, Criminal Minds, CSI: Miami and In Plain Sight. She has also appeared in films including Tales of an Ancient Empire (2010), Street Kings 2: Motor City (2011) and House of Dust (2013).
Lavi starred in the 2012 MTV television series Underemployed as Raviva, a pregnant aspiring singer. She portrayed Veronica "Vee" Dotson in the 2014 Fox television series Gang Related. She appeared in the seventh season of Sons of Anarchy as street prostitute Winsome.
In 2015, Lavi was cast in the lead role in the 2017 Bravo television series Imposters, playing "a Machiavellian con-artist and master of disguise". She was cast in the recurring role of Ravit Bivas, a highly-trained Israeli soldier, on the second season of the TNT naval drama The Last Ship in summer 2015. In 2016, Lavi joined the Prison Break revival in the role of Sheeba, a Yemeni activist. She joined the cast of Lucifer for the series' fourth season, playing Eve, the first woman made and mother to Cain and Abel.
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