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Her Story

Meetu is a Singer-Songwriter, TV Host, and Voice Artist

Based in New York City, Meetinder “Meetu” Chilana is the eldest of four children born to first generation Punjabi Sikh parents. Raised singing devotional hymns, they pushed her at a young age to perform at the temple and community events. “To tell you the truth, I was pretty shy,” she explained. “I would always say, ‘No I don’t want to perform!’ – and then secretly work hard on my performance to surprise them.”

Meetu is, in fact, full of surprises. Overcoming the challenges of balancing a home life deeply rooted in traditional culture, she’s established a prominent career as a performer. Influenced by a family of doctors, science was an inherent part of her life. However, spending every spare moment performing – in a play, in jazz band, in show choir – helped her discover her true calling. Her infectious love of the stage was the catalyst that fueled her ambitions. Meetu’s career began to flourish after attending New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts: she became a lead vocalist and character in two Cirque du Soleil productions; she was one of 14 actors nationwide to be endorsed by NBC in their 2013 Diversity Initiative; she’s performed at globally renowned venues from Mumbai to New York City and everywhere in between; she’s an actor, a TV host, and a voice-over artist that can be heard on video games (Far Cry 4), commercials (Cuisinart, Google) as well as numerous books on Audible.com. Most recently, she performed in the musical adaptation of “Monsoon Wedding” at Berkeley Repertory Theater working with Mira Nair, Vishal Bhardwaj, and Jaaved Jaaferi.

Meetu’s latest EP (a follow up to 2007’s debut “I Am.”) is a collection of four songs titled “In A Sense.” Indian-influenced and unabashedly cosmopolitan, the EP’s title track “In A Sense” and “Run Little Girl” showcase her invigorating vocal talent, and her cover of Mazzy Star’s “Fade Into You” summons a 90s alt-rock noir influence that’s rich with melody and eloquent phrasing. Channeling a youthful essence to draw upon inner-strength, creating the EP helped her discover that at the core of innocence lies the nexus of creativity and personal power.

“For me, it’s about embracing all the things that make us authentically human – including loneliness and disappointment which ultimately enrich our experience of joy. There’s no need to hide behind images of having a perfect life. My music is about transparency and searching for the truth within.”


Music Videos
Music Videos
Professional Reels
Professional Reels
Desi Well-Being Warriors: South Asians Breaking the Mold
Desi Well-Being Warriors: South Asians Breaking the Mold

READ: I was traveling with Cirque du Soleil in Moscow when I learned my cousin had passed. It was hard to process, especially being halfway around the world from family. After 4 years of touring, I decided it was time to be closer to home and find opportunities in New York. It was a difficult decision because I was soaring…

Ready to jump into the arms of my NYC community again, it was jarring to realize they had gotten used to me not being there. The loneliness and disconnection I felt after coming “home” was unexpected to say the least… READ MORE…

Meetu Chilana brings Bollywood, bhangra flavor to Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Zarkana’
Meetu Chilana brings Bollywood, bhangra flavor to Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Zarkana’

READ: She’s having the Cirque du Soleil experience of her life, but Meetu Chilana, who previously toured in Cirque’s production of Koozå and is currently winding up her run at Radio City Music Hall in the company’s Zarkana, is making it into the “Meetu experience.”

New York-based Chilana, who was born and raised in New Jersey, is playing the role of Clown Diva Castafiore in the surreal Zarkana (the title fuses the words “bizarre” and “arcana”), and understudying the fanciful roles of Lia (the magician Zark’s assistant), Mandragora (Flower Pistil Mutant Lady), Kundalini (Snake Mutant Lady), and Tarantula (Spider Mutant Lady). She also voices the animated Pickled Lady. …READ MORE…

A Cirque Show Even Non-Fans May Like
A Cirque Show Even Non-Fans May Like

READ: Cirque du Soleil, the entertainment behemoth created by Guy Laliberté, is a binary creature—you either like its fusion of ballet and death-defying acrobatics or you don’t. Zarkana, which has returned for a second, slightly trimmed-down stint at Radio City Music Hall, pushes the show’s dark edges even further. But Cirque haters beware: You’d be missing out to avoid it. Zarkana, written and directed by François Girard, achieves an effect that borders on rapture. …READ MORE…



Meetu Chilana: For the love of the stage
Meetu Chilana: For the love of the stage

READ: Meetu Chilana’s life has changed. Until a cou- ple of years ago she was like many other New York’s artists — buzzing with talent, yet struggling to be seen. But now most

of the days of the week, Chilana catches the subway from her apartment on Manhattan’s Lower East Side and heads to Radio City Music Hall where she performs as an understudy in Cirque Du Soliel’s new show Zarkana.

On Sundays and every alternate Tuesday she plays the lead — Lia, the lost love of Zark, a magician. In this role Chilana is often hanging from wires — with a harness — while she performs the show’s high ele- ments songs as a snake lady, a flower girl, a spider woman and, of course, Lia. She has grand moments when she captures the attention of the entire 6,000 seat theater and she loves it. The rest of the week she plays other roles in the show. …READ MORE…

NY Review: ‘Zarkana’
NY Review: ‘Zarkana’

READ: Bisson and Chilana make a dynamic duet, her soaring voice a nice interplay with his more fluid tenor. Girard still makes time for quieter pieces, such as gorgeous sand painting by Erika Chen and the crowd-pleasing acrobat Anatoly Zalevskiy, who performs a simple routine displaying strength and elegance. …READ MORE…

Feature Articles: Meetu Chilana
Feature Articles: Meetu Chilana

DOWNLOAD: A PDF including articles featuring Meetu Chilana in Andpersand Magazine, Eastern Eye, The Indian American, Indus Age, Sher-E-Punjab, Nxg Online


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Voice Over




HAIR: Brown           EYES: Brown            HEIGHT: 5’3″


Download PDF


MONSOON WEDDING Grandmother/Maid Berkeley Rep
BHANGIN’ IT (workshop) Mary Dramatists Guild
Cirque Du Soleil’s ZARKANA Principal Characters Radio City Music Hall, Kremlin Theater
Cirque Du Soleil’s KOOZA Principal Vocalist National Tour
BUNTY BERMAN PRESENTS…(workshop) Radha The New Group
BUMBUG UNPLUGGED Mrs. Scroogewala, Cratcheeta Patel Wild Project
RAKHELEAH Zilpa La Mama ETC w/ Liz Swados
JIHAD: THE MUSICAL Noor Edinburgh Fringe Festival
TROILUS & CRESSIDA Andromache Soho Repertory Theatre
THIS IS OUR YOUTH Jessica Goldman George Street Playhouse
THE ART OF PANHANDLING Alerianna Henry Street Settlement
SEVEN. 11 CONVENIENCE THEATER 2006 Various Kraine Theater
SEVEN. 11 CONVENIENCE THEATER 2007 Deepa, Cheekochio Queens Theater
HIGH TEA Indranee ATA Chernuchin Theater
BOMBAY SCREAMS Shruti Columbia U. w/ Anna Bogart
I AM THE CHICKEN MAN, CLUCK Susan Salaam Theatre
STUPID: THE PLAYS Tara Flea Theater
3rd STREET BLACKOUT East Village Chick Dir. Negin Farsad/Jeremy Redleaf
HIDING DIVYA Meghana Dir. Rehana Mirza
AL QARAM Fiza Dir. Affandy Yacoob
TIME AND THE HOUR RUN Mysterious Beauty Dir. Samir Patel
MEETING DURGA Durga Jaitley Dir. Priya Narayan
UNIVERSITY PLACE (Pilot) Nola Showtime
List Available Upon Request
Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute
  Advanced Acting: Hope Arthur Acting: Bill Balzac, Geoffrey Horne
  Jazz/Tap: Jeffery Ferguson Ballet: Barrie Estes
  Tai Chi: Ron Navarre Script Analysis: Lorca Peress
  Speech: Marnie Andrews Movement: Michael Ryan
  Dialects: John Van Wyden Acting for Film/TV: Pennie DuPont
  Voice Production: Scott Flaherty Balinese Dance: Carlos Fittante
Style and Character Studio- Advanced Film/Television Performance
  Acting/Scene Study: Kay Matschullat On-Camera Technique: James Gardner
  Mask: Per Brahe Comedy: Arthur Bartow
  LeCoq Technique: Richard Crawford Advanced Improvisation: Rosemary Quinn
VOCAL Vocal Technique: Will Bryan Jazz Improvisation: Peter Prisco
VIEWPOINTS Mary Overlie  
MASTER CLASS (Acting Workshops) Kathleen Turner, Bob Krakower
HOSTING BOOTCAMP Marki Costello, Todd Miller
VOICEOVER       Doriane Elliott
Singing 3 Octaves Suspended Upside Down by a Wire 11 Shows a Week. for real.Trained Singer (Mezzo-Soprano, Range: Bb2-Bb5); Indian Traditional Singing, Fluent Languages: English, Hindi, Punjabi; Conversational in Spanish; Moves Well (Jazz, Bhangra, Latin, Belly Dancing); Accents/Dialects (Indian, Middle Eastern, British –Standard/Cockney, Southern); Teleprompter/Earprompter Experience; NJ State Driver’s License (Standard/Automatic Driving); Plays Piano; Martial Arts/Kickboxing



Chilana's gorgeous voice haunts the cavernous Radio City space.
- Doug Strassler, New York Press