These celebrity millennials knew that it's tough to break into show business, but that a good stage name might give you a leg up in a sea of all the other Michaels, Matthews, Amandas, and Jessicas that were born between 1981 and 1996. Especially when you consider everything else they have to work against.
A number of people on this list simply dropped their last names to make what they were called catchier or easier to remember. Janelle Monáe and Alison Brie both have last names they no longer use, since their first and middle names were catchier on their own.
This list of famous stage names includes millennials who go by nicknames and famous people who have changed their names. It does not, however, include millennials who use their married surnames professionally, had their names legally changed as children, or celebrities with obviously theatrical stage names. Adele must have a last name and we know that ASAP Ferg and ASAP Rocky aren't related.
But not every millennial celebrity chose a stage name that stands out. It's hard to imagine that the JTT that covered every Tiger Beat and teen mag in the 90's could have been "JTW" if Jonathan Taylor Thomas hadn't changed his name from Jonathan Taylor Weiss. Which of these millennials have the most surprising birth names?
Birthplace: Oxford, England, UKTheodore Peter James Kinnaird Taptiklis (born 16 December 1984), better known as Theo James, is an English actor, director, producer and model, known for portraying the role of Tobias "Four" Eaton in ...more
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of AmericaOlivia Wilde (born March 10, 1984), is an American actress, producer, director, and activist. She is known for her role as Remy "Thirteen" Hadley on the medical-drama television series House ...more
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, USAAlicia Augello Cook (born January 25, 1981), known professionally as Alicia Keys, is an American musician, singer, and songwriter. A classically-trained pianist, Keys was composing songs by age 12 ...more
Birthplace: Tarzana, California, USABlake Ellender Lively (née Brown; August 25, 1987) is an American actress. Lively is known for starring as Serena van der Woodsen in the CW drama television series Gossip Girl (2007–2012). She also ...more
Birthplace: Santa Barbara, California, USAKatheryn Elizabeth Hudson (born October 25, 1984), known professionally as Katy Perry, is an American singer, songwriter, and television judge. After singing in church during her childhood, she ...more
Birthplace: Honolulu, Hawaii, United States of AmericaPeter Gene Hernandez (born October 8, 1985), known professionally as Bruno Mars, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, multi-instrumentalist, and dancer. He is known for his stage ...more
Birthplace: Jerusalem, IsraelNatalie Portman (born Neta-Lee Hershlag; June 9, 1981) is an actress and filmmaker with dual Israeli and American citizenship. She is the recipient of various accolades, including an Academy Award ...more
Birthplace: Seattle, Washington, USADove Olivia Cameron (born January 15, 1996) is an American actress and singer. She is known for playing a dual role as both title characters in the Disney Channel sitcom Liv and Maddie and for ...more
Birthplace: Bronx, New York, USALea Michele (born Lea Michele Sarfati on August 29, 1986) is an American actress, singer and author. She began her career as a child actress on Broadway, appearing in productions of Les Misérables ...more
Birthplace: Melbourne, Victoria, AustraliaRuby Rose Langenheim (born 20 March 1986) is an Australian model, actress, and television presenter. Rose came to attention as a presenter on MTV Australia (2007–2011), followed by several ...more
Birthplace: Springfield, Ohio, United States of AmericaJohn Roger Stephens (born December 28, 1978), known professionally as John Legend, is an American singer, songwriter, producer, actor, and philanthropist. Prior to the release of Legend's debut ...more
Birthplace: Nashville, Tennessee, USAMiley Ray Hemsworth (née Cyrus, born Destiny Hope Cyrus; November 23, 1992) is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. After playing minor roles in the television series Doc and the film Big ...more
Birthplace: Riverside, California, United States of AmericaAmy Lynn Hartzler (née Lee; born December 13, 1981), known professionally as Amy Lee, is an American singer, songwriter, and pianist. She is the co-founder and lead vocalist of the rock band ...more
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of AmericaElizabeth Woolridge Grant (born June 21, 1985), known by her stage name Lana Del Rey, is an American singer-songwriter. Her music is noted for its stylized, cinematic quality; it explores themes of ...more
Birthplace: Saint James, Trinidad and TobagoOnika Tanya Maraj (born December 8, 1982), known professionally as Nicki Minaj (), is a Trinidad and Tobago-born rapper, singer, songwriter, actress, and model. Born in Saint James, Port of Spain, ...more
Birthplace: Peckham, South London, England, UKJohn Adedayo B. Adegboyega (born 17 March 1992), known professionally as John Boyega, is an English actor known for playing Finn in the 2015 film Star Wars: The Force Awakens and its 2017 sequel Star ...more
Birthplace: Ruskin, Florida, USAAmanda Lee Williford (born January 22, 1981), known by her stage name Willa Ford, is an American singer, songwriter, dancer, model, television personality and film actress. She released her debut ...more
Birthplace: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, United States of AmericaJonathan Taylor Thomas (born Jonathan Taylor Weiss; September 8, 1981) is an American actor, voice actor, and director. He is known for portraying Randy Taylor on Home Improvement and voicing young ...more
Birthplace: Mazomanie, WisconsinHolly Brook Hafermann (born February 23, 1986), known professionally as Skylar Grey, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer and model from Mazomanie, Wisconsin. In 2004, at the age of 17, ...more
Birthplace: Euless, Texas, USAAahoo Jahansouz "Sarah" Shahi (Persian: آهو جهانسوز سارا شاهی; born January 10, 1980) is an Iranian-American television actress and former NFL Cheerleader of Iranian and Spanish ancestry. She played ...more
Birthplace: Hollywood, California, USAAlison Brie Schermerhorn (born December 29, 1982) is an American actress. Brie starred as Annie Edison in the comedy series Community (2009–2015) and Trudy Campbell in the drama series Mad Men ...more
Birthplace: Sacramento, California, USABrianne Sidonie Desaulniers (born October 1, 1989), known professionally as Brie Larson, is an American actress and filmmaker. Noted for her supporting work in comedies when a teenager, she has since ...more
Sofia Carson - born Sofía Daccarett Char1993-04-10
Age: 29Sofía Daccarett Char (born April 10, 1993), better known as Sofia Carson, is an American singer and actress. Her first appearance on television was as a guest star on the Disney Channel show, Austin ...more
Age: age 35
Birthplace: South PhiladelphiaAmber Levonchuck (born 21 October 1983), known professionally as Amber Rose, is an American model and actress. ...more
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States of AmericaTania Raymonde (born Tania Raymonde Helen Katz, March 22, 1988) is an American actress. She began her career in the recurring character of Cynthia Sanders in TV series Malcolm in the Middle between ...more