Sheela Ramesh is a music director/composer/arranger with a passion for stories and sounds that have traditionally been marginalized, and a mission to use art as a force for social justice. Since moving to NYC in mid-2021, Sheela has worked on Broadway (SIX, Moulin Rouge, Almost Famous, Once Upon a One More Time), Off-Broadway (Merrily We Roll Along at New York Theatre Workshop, Vanities at The York Theatre Company, Millennials Are Killing Musicals); television (Annie Live! on N.B.C., music director: Stephen Oremus), and shows in development, including The Karate Kid (music director: Andrew Resnick), Bliss (music director: Julie McBride; music supervisors: Mary-Mitchell Campbell & Kenny Seymour), Diamond Alice (Fiasco Theater), Work (Schubert Organization), A Transparent Musical (music director: Julie McBride), The Lunchbox (Lincoln Center Theater, music director: Cynthia Meng), Miss Step (Playwrights Horizons, music director: Matthew Lowy), The Hula Hoopin’ Queen of 139th Street (New York City Children’s Theater), Jeannette: The Musical, The Goree All-Girl String Band, and more. She also music directed and co-orchestrated the world premiere of Group! (Passage Theatre), and contributed orchestrations to Jessica Vosk’s My Golden Age concert at Carnegie Hall (music director: Mary-Mitchell Campbell).
Sheela’s own music has been commissioned and featured by opera companies, museums, in concerts/cabaret, and elsewhere. Her original song My Girl, Chardonnay was released by mezzo-soprano Leandra Ramm, and her song Three Steps Forward was commissioned and premiered by “activist opera company” White Snake Projects and performed by Resonance Works. Her song cycle We Are Not Afraid of the Dark (co-written with Alison Luterman) was a 2020 finalist for the Berkeley Rep Ground Floor residency before cancelation due to Covid-19, and was performed at the East Broadway Theatre Project in early 2022; its song Running was a Write Out Loud songwriting contest finalist. Sheela is an upcoming member of the BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop and currently serves as an Artist Ambassador for the New York City Civil Liberties Union.
Sheela received undergraduate and graduate degrees in vocal performance at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Music and the Royal College of Music, where she studied as a Marshall Scholar. She has performed as a mezzo-soprano in musical theater and opera productions in the US and UK, and as a singer of Carnatic (South Indian) music. Sheela also holds degrees in psychology/cognitive science (BS, Carnegie Mellon; MSc, University College London) and law (JD, Yale Law School), and has spent her nonmusical professional life working to ensure that youth who’ve experienced trauma have opportunities to thrive.
- Off Broadway
- NYC/Tri-State Area
- Northern California
Interested in touring?
- Theatrical Composer (Music only)
- Music Director/Conductor (Pianist)
- Music Director/Conductor (Not Pianist)
- Vocal Director and/or Choral Prep
- Music Assistant
- Vocal Arranger
- Dance Arranger
- Incidental Music Composer/Arranger
- Music Copyist
- Music Transcriber
- Pit Musician (Keyboards)
- Audition Pianist
- Class/Voice Lesson/Rehearsal Pianist
- Voice teacher with roster of private students
My Primary Instrument
- piano, keyboard, and voice
- Synth - keyboards
- THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF MUSICIANS (AFM)