After receiving critical acclaim for her Tony award-nominated performance as Deena Jones, a role she created in Michael Bennett's landmark musical Dreamgirls, Sheryl Lee Ralph
turned her attention to television and film. On television, she has starred in It's a Living, New Attitude, George Foreman
's series George and the hit comedy Designing Women. Her extensive feature film credits include Sister Act II, The Flintstones, The Mighty Quinn, Mistress, The Distinguished Gentleman, Witchhunt, in which she shares top billing with Dennis Hopper
and Penelope Ann Miller
, and To Sleep With Anger for which she won the 1991 Independent Spirit Award
as Best Supporting Actress.
As a producer, Ralph has found great success with the highly acclaimed Divas Simply Singing, an evening of song and entertainment which she created in 1991. Featuring some of the most talented female entertainers in film, stage, TV and music, the event has become one of the most important AIDS fundraisers in Hollywood. Ralph also completed her first full-length feature screenplay, Kiss the Sky, a romantic adventure in which she collaborated with critically acclaimed writer Ralph Farquhar.
Raised between Long Island, New York, and Jamaica, Ralph originally planned to become a doctor until she encountered a cadaver in a premed course and quickly changed her mind. After switching to an English Literature major with a minor in theater arts, she found her true calling. At age 19, she became the youngest female graduate of Rutgers University and was named one of the Top Ten College Women in America by Glamour magazine. Of all the roles she has played, Ralph considers her greatest to be wife to husband Eric and mother to son, Etienne, and daughter, Ivy-Victoria.