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Robert Sherman

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Robert B. Sherman

Biography

Robert Bernard Sherman (19 December 1925, New York City – 6 March 2012, London) was an American songwriter who specialized in musical films with his brother Richard Sherman.

Sherman's father later became a well known Tin Pan Alley songwriter. As a youth, Robert Sherman excelled in intellectual pursuits, taking up the violin and piano, painting and writing poetry. Following seven years of frequent cross-country moves, the Shermans finally settled down in Beverly Hills, California. Some of the primary schools Robert attended in Manhattan included PS 241 and the Ethical Culture Fieldston School; in California, the El Rodeo School. Throughout his years at Beverly Hills High School, he wrote and produced radio and stage programs for which he won much acclaim. At age 16, he wrote Armistice and Dedication Day, a stage play centered on contemporary 1940s Americans that showed how their lives were inextricably changed following the December 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor. The play yielded thousands of dollars for War Bonds and earned a special citation from the War Department.

In 1943, Sherman obtained permission from his parents to join the army a year early, at age 17. On April 12, 1945, Sherman was shot in the knee, forcing him to walk with a cane for the rest of his life.

On his return to the United States, Sherman attended Bard College in upstate New York where he majored in English literature and painting. Sherman also served as the editor-in-chief of The Bardian which is the campus newspaper. At Bard, Sherman completed his first two novels, The Best Estate and Music, Candy and Painted Eggs. He graduated in the class of 1949.

Within two years, Sherman and his brother Richard began writing songs together on a challenge from their father. In 1958, Sherman founded the music publishing company Music World Corporation, which later worked with Disney's BMI publishing arm, Wonderland Music Company. According to the official Walt Disney Company website and independent fact checkers, "the Sherman Brothers were responsible for more motion picture musical song scores than any other songwriting team in film history." Some of the Sherman Brothers' best known songs were incorporated into live action and animation musical films including: Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Slipper and the Rose, and Charlotte's Web. Their most well known work however remains the theme park song It's a Small World (After All).

A lesser known aspect of Sherman's life was his painting which he had done since 1941 and kept private (except from his family and close friends) until 2002.


Works for Winds


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