Robert Sherman (music critic)

Robert Sherman (born July 1932) is an American radio broadcaster, author, music critic, writer, and educator. He achieved great success as a host of such radio programs as the folk music program “Woody’s Children” and the nationally broadcast “The Listening Room” which were broadcast by station WQXR in New York.

As an author, Sherman has been a music critic and columnist for The New York Times for more than forty years as well as the author of numerous books including two bestsellers he co-authored with pianist and comedian Victor Borge. He is the author of the book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Classical Music, published in 1997.[1] As an educator, he has served in the faculty of the Juilliard School for nearly twenty years. He is the son of famous pianist Nadia Reisenberg and the nephew of noted thereminist Clara Rockmore.


Robert Sherman began his broadcasting career at radio station WQXR in New York as a typist-clerk eventually working his way up to Program Director and then Senior Consultant. In 1969, he began hosting the popular radio folk program “Woody’s Children” which can now be heard on WFUV. In 1970, “The Listening Room” debuted with Sherman as the host and was picked up to be nationally broadcast.

Sherman soon extended his hosting talents to the television format when he began hosting the program “Vibrations” on PBS and “Camera Three” on CBS both in 1972. During this time he continued working at WQXR hosting several more radio programs from the late 1970s to the 2000s. Today, Sherman can still be found on the airwaves broadcasting on Sirius XM Radio, as well as on the Young Artists Showcase, a program of young performers which Sherman launched on WQXR in 1978.

In 1964, Sherman began contributing regularly to The New York Times as both a music columnist and critic and in 1969 he began his career as a lecturer and educator at New York University, teaching there for almost twenty years. In 1971 and 1980, respectively, Sherman published two bestselling books My Favorite Intermissions and My Favorite Comedies in Music in collaboration with Victor Borge.

Robert Sherman is also a concert narrator for such groups as the Greenwich Symphony and Canadian Brass.[2] He serves on the advisory boards of a multitude of cultural organizations where he performs such duties as competition judge, pre-concert lecturer, and panel moderator, and fundraising emcee. He hosts the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts presentation of the annual Avery Fisher Career Grants and hosts and produces the McGraw-Hill Companies' Young Artists Showcase.

Recent ventures

For the past few years, Sherman has spent much of his time preserving the memories of both his mother, the pianist Nadia Reisenberg, and his aunt, noted thereminist Clara Rockmore, through the management of biographies, memorial events, and the writing of commentaries on their recordings. In collaboration with his brother, Alexander Sherman, Robert Sherman has completed the project of releasing a book about his mother entitled Nadia Reisenberg: A Musician’s Scrapbook which was published by The International Piano Archives at Maryland in 1986. Sherman was also a part of Clara Rockmore's Lost Theremin Album release in 2006 on Bridge Records.[3] Sherman remains active in broadcasting, lecturing, narrating, and writing.


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