Sheila Bristow received her BFA in music composition from Cornish College of the Arts, where she studied with Bern Herbolsheimer as a Kreielsheimer Scholar. Student works were featured in performances sponsored by by the Boston Conservatory Young Composer’s Competition, the Seattle Flute Society, and the Canadian Consulate of Seattle.

In recent years she has written for friends and colleagues, primarily choral and vocal works. Her choral works have been performed by Choral Union (Pacific Lutheran University), Harmonia Orchestra & Chorus, Medieval Women's Choir, Opus 7, and Seattle Pro Musica. Continuing education includes private lessons and workshops (Lehigh University Composers Forum; Art Song Lab, Vancouver International Song Institute; Vancouver Pro Musica).

Most recently Sheila has joined the circle of Northwest composers associated with Harmonia Orchestra & Chorus, directed by William White. In 2023 Harmonia premiered her largest work to date, When Music Sounds, for solo tenor, chorus, and orchestra. In 2024 they will premiere Winter Solstice for chorus and chamber ensemble.

Selected Catalog (scores available upon request):



        Fair as a dove            SSA (recording & score available on Project Encore)
                                             ATB (click here for recording)
                                             text: Responsory for the Feast of the Assumption 

        Jubilate Deo               SA, organ
                                             text: Psalm 100
                                             (click here for recording)

       Kyrie                             SATB, organ
                                             text: Ordinary of the Mass
                                             (click here for recording)

      O Queen of Heaven    SATB a cappella
                                             text: 15th cent. English
                                             (published by GIA; click here for recording and preview score)


     I Arise                             SSATBB
                                             text: Inuit poetry
                                             (click here for recording)

     Velvet Shoes                 SSA
                                             text: Elinor Wylie
                                             (for sale at JW Pepper; click here for recording and preview score)

Larger Choral Works

     When Music Sounds    three-movement work for tenor solo, chorus & chamber orchestra
                                             texts: Shakespeare, Walter de la Mare, E. E Cummings
                                             (click here for video)


     I Wonder as I Wander        soprano & viola
                                                   arrangement of American folk hymn
                                                   (click here for recording) 

     In mir                                    mezzo soprano & piano
                                                    text: Christian Vuissa
                                                    (click here for recording)

    The Finding                           mezzo soprano & piano
                                                    text: Meharoona Ghani
                                                    (click here for recording)

    The Persistence of Song    mezzo soprano, tenor & piano
                                                   text: Howard Moss
                                                   (click here for recording)


    Six Preludes on a Theme   solo piano
                                                   (click here for recording)

    Waltz                                     solo guitar