Lenny Abrahamson, currently our most successful director, is an alumnus of The High School, which sounded American even before its students did.
When it comes to the upper echelons of Ireland's wealth hierarchy, college-educated old boys - such as founder of Cy Ber Corp, Philip Berber - are the exception.
More than any other game, it seems to cross-pollinate the worlds of business and politics.
The arts, here as elsewhere, has become notably more middle class since the invention of the internet.
Rugby is actually only slightly less niche than those other private-school pastimes, tennis or hockey.
Sydney Russell School in Dagenham has defended its actions saying the event had been advertised for weeks before and the school's policy on pupils having to work separately or being sent home was clear.
A spokesman said: 'If a child arrives in school on a non-uniform day without school uniform but without having paid their pound, parents are phoned and given the choice of their child staying in school but working apart from other pupils or going home to change.
What is it about a private education that still gives such a distinct advantage in Irish life?
Even through the recession, the top schools increased their numbers - and their fees.
Elite education has been described as "more affordable" here than in other developed economies, meaning a greater spread of the middle class have access to prestigious schools, if they so wish.