Richard Sherman Mary Poppins And Songwriter Of “It’s An Small World,” Passes Away Aged 95

Richard M. Sherman, the legendary Disney songwriter acclaimed for his contributions to iconic classics such as Mary Poppins and “It’s a Small World”, has passed away due to age-related illness at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Beverly Hills – as reported by The Walt Disney Company. Together with Robert B. Sherman he formed one of Disney’s most celebrated songwriting duos with lasting contributions both musically and cinematically.

Prolific Composer-Lyricist

Richard M. Sherman was one half of the Academy Award-winning duo The Sherman Brothers. With his brother Robert, Richard created some of Disney’s most memorable songs. According to The Walt Disney Company, Richard was considered “prolific composer-lyricist” and was part of Walt’s inner circle of creative talents; their partnership produced numerous classics that have become integral parts of Disney experiences worldwide.

Timeless Classics

The Sherman Brothers won two Academy Awards for their work on the 1964 classic film, “Mary Poppins.” Their accolades included Best Score: Substantially Original and Best Original Song (“Chime Chime Cher-eel”) – their work has become beloved classics over generations of fans who cherish songs like “A Spoonful of Sugar” and “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”.

Pete Doctor, chief creative officer of Pixar Animation Studios, applauded Richard Sherman’s lasting spirit and zest for life. According to Doctor, Richard shared his infectious passion with anyone lucky enough to come into contact with him – even those in their 90s could feel rejuvenated after witnessing him perform “Spoonful of Sugar”. “Even in his later years he exuded more energy and enthusiasm than most, leaving me always inspired by Richard’s infectious enthusiasm. I never left Richard without feeling inspired!”

Impact on Disney Parks

Richard Sherman left an indelible mark on Disney parks far beyond Hollywood. His songs have become iconic attractions at theme parks worldwide; greeting guests with familiar songs such as “It’s a Small World”, “There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow”, and “The Tiki, Tiki Room”. These melodies not only define Disney park experiences but also capture the joy and optimism inherent to Richard and Robert Sherman’s music.

Recognition and Awards

Richard Sherman enjoyed an extraordinary 65-year career that earned him nine Academy Award nominations, three Grammy awards, 24 gold or platinum albums and induction as a Disney Legend in 1990.

A Legacy in Film

The Sherman Brothers were beloved contributors to several beloved films beyond Disney, such as: 1968 (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang), 1972 (Snoopy Come Home), 1973 (Charlotte’s Web), 1974 (Huckleberry Finn), and 1976 (The Slipper and Rose). Their ability to craft memorable tunes that resonated with audiences of all ages made them beloved figures in cinema history.

Personal Reflections

Leonard Maltin, an esteemed film historian and educator noted the optimism of the Sherman Brothers as well as their father’s influence in their lives. Maltin noted: “[The Sherman Brothers were] professional optimists who found an ideal patron in Walt Disney,” adding: “Their songs carried an upbeat vibe that extended into Richard’s personal life despite its trials and difficulties; he felt especially proud that they carried on songwriting careers like their father had encouraged early on.”

Bob Iger, CEO of The Walt Disney Company, noted Richard Sherman’s lasting contributions. Iger noted his “epitome of what it means to be a Disney Legend”, creating with brother Robert the timeless classics that have become part of our soundtracks and memories. We remain immensely thankful for what Richard left on this world and extend our sincerest condolences to his family.”


Richard M. Sherman’s passing marks an end of an era for Disney music. Together with Robert, their work has left an indelible mark on entertainment; their songs continue to bring joy and inspiration to many young and old alike. We remember Richard Sherman with great admiration as we commemorate his remarkable contributions to music as we honor his enduring legacy within Disney and beyond; we remember with great affection all his melodies which will live on, reminding us all of its magical potential.

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