Resources › For Students and Parents Celebrities Who Attended Private School Share Flipboard Email Print For Students and Parents Private School For Parents & Educators Choosing a Private School Homework Help Test Prep College Admissions College Life Graduate School Business School Law School Distance Learning View More By Stacy Jagodowski Education Expert M.A., Communications and Information Management, Bay Path College B.A., Journalism and Design, Mount Holyoke College Stacy Jagodowski has over 15 years of experience in admissions, teaching, and marketing and communications for private schools. our editorial process Stacy Jagodowski Updated January 16, 2020 Private schools are known for their robust programs, including arts programs. Their flexible schedules, online learning portals, and personal attention are often ideal for budding actors who wish to go on auditions and engage in television and movie roles. The same can often be said for those who wish to pursue professions as musicians, singers, and songwriters. Check out these famous actors and musicians of yesterday and today who attended private schools throughout the years. 01 of 52 Alexis Bledel Gilbert Carrasquillo/Getty Images The Gilmore Girls star attended St. Agnes Academy, a Catholic school in Houston, Texas. 02 of 52 Tempestt Bledsoe Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images The actress who started out on The Cosby Show attended the famous Professional Children's School in New York, which is known for producing some of the nation's top stars, including Christopher Walken, Tara Reid, Scarlett Johansson, Macaulay Culkin, Donald Faison, Carrie Fisher, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Christina Ricci, and many others. She wasn't the only Cosby star to attend private school, either. Her on-screen younger sister, Keshia Knight Pulliam, also attended private school, but not the same one. 03 of 52 Julie Bowen Steven Granitz/Getty Images Best Known for her role in Modern Family, the actress attended several private schools, including Calvert School and Garrison Forest School, both in Maryland, before going on to St. George's School in Rhode Island, an Episcopal private boarding school. 04 of 52 Steve Carell S. Flanigan/Getty Images The actor, best known for his roles in The Office, 40-Year-Old Virgin attended Middlesex School, a private boarding school in Concord, Massachusetts. He was one of several celebrities to appear in an Annual Fund giving video appeal in 2009 for Oakwood School, which many thought would go viral, but only earned about 38,255 views (which is still awesome, but just not as awesome as they had hoped). 05 of 52 Glenn Close Taylor Hill/Getty Images The famous actress attended Choate Rosemary Hall, a boarding and day school in Connecticut. She is in good company among Choate alumni, some of whom include Michael Douglas, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Paul Giamatti. 06 of 52 Natalie Cole Jerod Harris/Getty Images The Grammy Award-Winning vocalist attended Northfield Mount Hermon School, a college prep boarding and day school in Massachusetts. She graduated in 1968. 07 of 52 David Crosby Paul Morigi/Getty Images The famed guitarist, singer, and songwriter, a founding member of three bands: the Byrds, CPR, and Crosby, Stills & Nash, attended the Cate School in California. 08 of 52 Tom Cruise Samir Hussein/Getty Images The actor attended St. Francis Seminary, a Catholic school. High school is when he developed an interest in acting, before going on to star in the hits Risky Business and Top Gun, among other blockbuster movie hits. 09 of 52 Jamie Lee Curtis Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images The award-winning actress attended Choate Rosemary Hall, a boarding and day school in Connecticut. She is in good company among other Choate alumni actors, including Glenn Close, Michael Douglas, and Paul Giamatti. 10 of 52 Charlie Day C Flanigan/Getty Images The It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia actor attended Portsmouth Abbey School in Rhode Island. When he was a student, he played shortstop on the baseball team. 11 of 52 Blythe Danner Brent N. Clarke/Getty Images Known for numerous roles, the actress attended the George School, a Quaker, coed boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12. Both she and fellow George School alumna Liz Larsen starred in the ABC miniseries about Bernie Madoff's life. Blythe graduated in 1960. 12 of 52 Bette Davis Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images The Academy Award-winning Actress attended Cushing Academy in Massachusetts. She began acting in school productions at the Academy, before going on to attend the John Murray Anderson/Robert Milton School of Theatre and Dance, where one of her classmates was Lucille Ball. She is also listed among the Historic Figures at Northfield Mount Hermon School, also in Massachusetts, which suggests that she graduated in 1927. 13 of 52 Benicio del Toro Steve Granitz/Getty Images The famous actor attended Mercersberg Academy in Pennsylvania. 14 of 52 Michael Douglas David Livingston/Getty Images The famous actor attended Choate Rosemary Hall, a boarding and day school in Connecticut. He is in good company with Choate alumni, some of whom include Glenn Close, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Paul Giamatti. 15 of 52 David Duchovny Vincent Sandoval/Getty Images The actor best known for his role as Mulder in the X-Files attended Collegiate School in Manhattan, an all-boys school. 16 of 52 Donald Faison Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images The actor attended the famous Professional Children's School in New York, which is known for producing some of the nation's top stars, including Christopher Walken, Tara Reid, Scarlett Johansson, Macaulay Culkin, Donald Faison, Carrie Fisher, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Christina Ricci, and many others. His brother, Dade Faison, attended Wilbraham & Monson Academy in Massachusetts. 17 of 52 Dakota Fanning Jeffrey Mayer/Getty Images Fanning graduated from Campbell Hall School in California in 2011. She was a cheerleader and was voted homecoming queen. 18 of 52 Jane Fonda Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images The Oscar-winning actress, best known for her numerous roles in movies and television shows, as well as her series of aerobic exercise videos, is also a private school alumna. She attended Emma Willard, an all-girls boarding school in Troy, New York. 19 of 52 Matthew Fox Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images This actor wasn't "Lost" when it came to his education. Matthew Fox attended the prestigious Deerfield Academy in Massachusetts. 20 of 52 Jim Gaffigan Andrew Toth/Getty Images The comedian attended La Lumiere School in Indiana 21 of 52 Paul Giamatti Amanda Edwards/Getty Images The famous actor attended Choate Rosemary Hall, a boarding and day school in Connecticut. He is in good company with other Choate alumni actors, some of whom include Michael Douglas, Jamie Lee Curtis and Glenn Close. 22 of 52 Ariana Grande Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images When she lived in Florida, the talented musician attended Pine Crest School and North Broward Preparatory School. When she joined the cast of the musical 13 on Broadway, she left North Broward but remained enrolled at the school. 23 of 52 Maggie & Jake Gyllenhaal Jeff Vespa/Getty Images The brother and sister pair both attended and graduated from Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles. 24 of 52 Jean Harlow Bettman/Getty Images The famous actress attended Miss Barstow's Finishing School for Girls in Kansas. Founded in 1884, the Barstow School is the oldest independent school west of the Mississippi. It was an all-girls institution until 1960 when boys were admitted to the first grade, and Barstow gradually became a coed school, one year at a time. The first coeducational class graduated in 1972. 25 of 52 Salma Hayek Jeffrey Mayer/Getty Images The actress attended the Academy of the Sacred Heart in Louisiana. She reportedly played pranks on the nuns there, setting the clocks back three hours. Eventually, she was expelled. 26 of 52 Paris Hilton Pierre Suu/Getty Images The reality tv star bounced between several private schools during her high school years. She started at Palm Valley School in California before heading to Provo Canyon School for troubled teens, where she spent one year. From there, she attended Canterbury School in Connecticut, where she played ice hockey but was kicked out for violating school rules. From there, she went to the Dwight School before ultimately dropping out and later earning her GED. 27 of 52 Hal Holbrook Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images The Emmy and Tony Award-winning actor, known for his roles in Into the Wild, Lincoln, and Wall Street, attended the Culver Academies in Indiana. 28 of 52 Katie Holmes George Pimentel/Getty Images The Dawson's Creek alumna is also an alumna of the all-girls school Notre Dame Academy in Toledo. She reportedly appeared in a number of plays at nearby all-boys schools. 29 of 52 Felicity Huffman Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images The Desperate Housewives actress attended The Putney School in Vermont. Actor Tea Leoni is also an alumna of the Putney School. 30 of 52 William Hurt Jim Spellman/Getty Images The actor attended Middlesex School in Massachusetts where he was the president of the drama club and had the lead role in numerous school plays. His high school yearbook predicted his success, saying that one day, he might even be seen on Broadway. Hurt isn't the only celeb to grace the halls of Middlesex, as actor Steve Carell also attended. 31 of 52 Jewel Amanda Edwards/Getty Images Jewel honed her craft at the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. She's featured in a video that was part of the school's 50th anniversary, in which she talks about the impact the Arts Academy had on her as an artist. 32 of 52 Scarlett Johansson Jeff Schear/Getty Images The actress attended the famous Professional Children's School in New York, which is known for producing some of the nation's top stars, including Christopher Walken, Tara Reid and Christina Ricci. While she was a student at the Professional Children's School, she dated classmate Jack Antonoff, who went on to become the guitarist for the band Fun. 33 of 52 Tommy Lee Jones Jean Catuffe/Getty Images The famous actor, a Texas native, attended the all-boys school, St. Mark's School in Dallas, on scholarship. His mother was a police officer and school teacher, and his father was an oil field worker. Tommy graduated in 1965 and later served on the board of directors at the school. After graduation, he went on to study and play football at Harvard, also on a scholarship. One of his Harvard roommates was future Vice-President Al Gore. 34 of 52 Ke$ha Leigh Vogel/Getty Images The singer and songwriter spent her fifth-grade year at Harpeth Hall, an all-girls school in Nashville, Tennessee. 35 of 52 Talib Kweli Taylor Hill/Getty Images The hip hop recording artist and social activist attended Cheshire Academy, a coed boarding and day school in Cheshire, Connecticut. He attended the Academy at the same time as actor James Van Der Beek, though they were not in the same class. 36 of 52 Lady Gaga Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images Lady Gaga, whose name is actually Stefani Germanotta, attended the Convent of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic all-girls school in New York City. 37 of 52 Lorenzo Lamas Desiree Navarro/Getty Images The actor attended the Admiral Farragut Academy in Florida, as did musician and actor Stephen Stills. 38 of 52 Liz Larsen Walter McBride/Getty Images The actress attended the George School, a Quaker, coed boarding and day school for students in grades 9 to 12. Both she and fellow George School alumna Blythe Danner starred in the ABC miniseries about Bernie Madoff's life. Liz graduated in 1976. 39 of 52 Cyndi Lauper D Dipasupil/Getty Images The talented singer reportedly was expelled from not one, but two different Catholic grade schools. 40 of 52 Jack Lemmon Kypros/Getty Images The "grumpy" actor, known for numerous roles including Some Like It Hot, and the Grumpy Old Men movies, attended the Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. 41 of 52 Tea Leoni Tibrina Hobson / Getty Images Before she was running from dinosaurs in Jurassic Park II and having Fun with Dick and Jane, the actress attended The Putney School in Vermont. Actor Felicity Huffman is also an alumna of the Putney School. 42 of 52 Huey Lewis John Lamparski/Getty Images The famed musician attended the Lawrenceville School in New Jersey. 43 of 52 Laura Linney Desiree Navarro/Getty Images The Academy Award-nominated actress, best known for films including The Savages, The Nanny Diaries, Kinsey, and You Can Count on Me, attended Northfield Mount Hermon School. She graduated from the college prep school located in Massachusetts in 1982. She also was both an Emmy and Golden Globe winner for best actress in the HBO miniseries, John Adams. 44 of 52 Jennifer Lopez Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images The talented singer and actress attended the Holy Family Catholic School and Preston High School in the Bronx. She participated in gymnastics, track and softball. 45 of 52 Madonna Rabbani and Solimene Photography/Getty Images Madonna attended two different Catholic schools during her younger years, St. Frederick's Catholic School and St. Andrew's Catholic School. 46 of 52 Elizabeth Montgomery Rabbani and Solimene Photography/Getty Images The actress is part of an exclusive group of women who attended The Spence School, an all-girls school in Manhattan. Other famous alumnae of the Spence School include Gwyneth Paltrow, Kerry Washington, and Emmy Rossum. 47 of 52 Mary Kate & Ashley Olsen Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images The famous twins attended Campbell Hall, the same Episcopal school as Dakota Fanning, though they graduated about seven years apart. 48 of 52 Gwyneth Paltrow Donato Sardella/Getty Images The actress & singer, daughter of Blythe Danner, is also part of the exclusive group of women who attended The Spence School, an all-girls school in Manhattan. Other famous alumnae of the Spence School include Elizabeth Montgomery, Kerry Washington, and Emmy Rossum. 49 of 52 Sarah Jessica Parker Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images Despite starting her professional career at a young age, Sarah Jessica Parker still studied at both the American Ballet School and the Professional Children's School. After graduation, she chose to pursue a full-time acting career over additional schooling. 50 of 52 Joe Perry John Parra/Getty Images The Aerosmith guitarist attended Vermont Academy but left in 1969 without graduating. He knew that the best path to success for him was through music. 51 of 52 Luke & Owen Wilson Stefanie Keenan / Contributor / Getty Images Luke and Owen Wilson both attended St. Mark's in Dallas, Texas (the same school as Tommy Lee Jones, though, of course at the same time). According to Owen Wilson's website, he was expelled from the school in tenth grade for allegedly stealing his teacher's math textbook to finish his homework more quickly. Owen was the second son of an advertising executive and a photographer, and his older brother Andrew also attended St. Mark's. Luke Wilson was elected class president at the school, and he went on to run track and study at Occidental College and Texas Christian University. Both brothers have risen to fame being featured in a number of movies. 52 of 52 Reese Witherspoon David M. Benett / Getty Images Reese Witherspoon attended the all-girls' school, Harpeth Hall in Nashville, Tennessee. The self-described super-achiever earned top grades while appearing in movies even before she had graduated from high school. Witherspoon was also a cheerleader at the school. Harpeth Hall is a 5 to 12 girls' college-prep school. Singer-songwriter Ke$ha also attended this school for a period of time.