Skip to Content

Richard M. Sherman, one half of songwriting duo behind ‘Mary Poppins’ and ‘It’s a Small World,’ dead at 95

Richard M. Sherman attends the 2014 TCM Classic Film Festival's opening night of the restoration of
Jennifer Lourie/FilmMagic/Getty Images via CNN Newsource
Richard M. Sherman attends the 2014 TCM Classic Film Festival's opening night of the restoration of "Oklahoma!" at the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on April 10, 2014, in Hollywood, California. Sherman, with his late brother Robert wrote songs for “Mary Poppins” has died at age 95.

By Dan Heching, CNN

(CNN) — Richard M. Sherman, who with his late brother Robert wrote songs for the 1964 Disney classic “Mary Poppins” as well as the song “It’s a Small World,” has died. He was 95.

The news was confirmed in an announcement on the Walt Disney Company website, where Sherman was referred to as “one of the most prolific composer-lyricists in the history of family entertainment, and a key member of Walt Disney’s inner circle of creative talents.”

The announcement shared that Sherman died Saturday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, due to age-related illness.

Sherman won two Oscars with his brother in 1965 for his work on “Mary Poppins,” for best original score, and best original song for “Chim Chim Cher-ee.”

Along with his brother, he was nominated seven more times throughout the 1970s for other Disney films including “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and “Bedknobs and Broomsticks.” He also won a Grammy Award for best original score for “Mary Poppins.”

The Sherman brothers also contributed music for a number of Disney theme park attractions, according to the announcement posted Saturday. Those songs included “There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow,” “The Tiki, Tiki, Tiki Room,” and their most lasting contribution, “It’s a Small World,” for the iconic theme park ride famous for showing many different cultures throughout the world singing the same tune in various languages. The announcement said that Sherman once described the song as “a prayer for peace.”

“Richard Sherman was the embodiment of what it means to be a Disney Legend, creating along with his brother Robert the beloved classics that have become a cherished part of the soundtrack of our lives,” said Bob Iger, CEO of The Walt Disney Company.

“From films like ‘Mary Poppins’ and ‘The Jungle Book’ to attractions like ‘it’s a small world,’ the music of the Sherman Brothers has captured the hearts of generations of audiences. We are forever grateful for the mark Richard left on the world, and we extend our deepest condolences to his family.”

™ & © 2024 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

Article Topic Follows: CNN - Entertainment

Jump to comments ↓

CNN Newsource


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content