Alicia Roanne Witt is an American film, stage and television actress who can currently be seen on the series Law & Order: Criminal Intent.
Witt was born in Worcester, Massachusetts, the daughter of Diane, a junior high school reading teacher, and Robert Witt, a science teacher and photographer. She has a brother, Ian. Witt was discovered by David Lynch when she appeared on the television show That's Incredible! in 1980; she had recited Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. He cast her in the movie Dune (1984);, where she played Paul Atreides' young sister Alia Atreides. She turned eight during the making of this film. Afterwards, she left Hollywood to concentrate on her studies and music. She was home schooled by her parents. She studied piano at Boston University and won several national and international classical piano competitions, including the "Bartok-Kabalevsky International Piano Competition".
At age fourteen, Witt earned her high school diploma. Shortly thereafter, she moved to Hollywood with her mother (who was noted from 1988-93 in the Guinness Book of Records for the world's longest hair); to pursue a career as a full-time actress. Soon, David Lynch, to whom she refers as a mentor, created the role of Gersten Hayward especially for her in his successful series Twin Peaks. He cast her again in Blackout, a segment in his short-lived HBO series Hotel Room. That was the last collaboration between the two for a while.