for soprano and ensemble (see below)

One movement, (5 minutes)

Written for Allison Charney, Arts Ahimsa and The Global Peace Initiative of Women, Invocation was premiered on March 27, 2006 at St. Bartholomew’s Church in New York City. The text is the phrase “Make peace on all your lands” and the word “Peace” sung in fourteen different languages. Allison and I chose the phrase, and then I walked around my neighborhood (Washington Heights in Manhattan) and collected every translation I could find in a five block radius.

Originally scored for flute, violin and cello, Invocation now exists in many forms. A most recent version is for Soprano and String Quartet and Solo Violin (currently featured in recent performances page.) A version for Soprano and Chamber Orchestra was premiered by the New Hampshire Music Festival in 2011.


for flute and piano

Commissioned by the Pappoutsakis Foundation, and premiered February 2, 2003 in Boston, MA.

One movement, (7 minutes)

“karner blue” celebrates the life of the Karner Blue Butterfly. This beautiful endangered creature lives an intense short life. The music reflects the life of the creature, its beauty in nature, the joy of flight, and the delicate balance between survival and extinction.

“karner blue” is published by Falls House Press


for organ solo

Commissioned by the First Congregational Church of Crystal Lake, IL, and premiered in 1999. One movement (7 minutes)

Joyful Hymn is a theme and variations based on “Ever Journeying Friend” a hymn written especially for the church to celebrate their sesquicentennial.


for guitar and english horn

(also available for guitar and flute)

Three movements (9 minutes)

1. Have No Words 2. Enemy Shadows 3. A Hawk Circling

The Vision is inspired by descriptions of a vision that came to the Native American warrior, Crazy Horse, when he was a young man. In it, he saw three significant events in his life – including his death.

Recorded by Klemp Kachian Duo on their CD “Falls Flyer”

Available through http://www.cdbaby/cd/klempk


for solo guitar

Commissioned and premiered by Christopher Kachian (1995)

Three Movements (9 minutes)

1. Have No Words 2. Enemy Shadows 3. A Hawk Circling

Real World is the solo guitar version of The Vision.


for Saxophone Quartet

Written for and premiered by the Amherst Saxophone Quartet (2001)

A set of 7 tiny movements (3 minutes)

1. Doo 2. Wah 3. Dittie 4. Did-he? 5. Dum(b) 6. Didee 7. Dew

A humorous suite of extremely short pieces.


for chamber orchestra

Premiered by the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Wm. McGlaughlin (1981)

1 movement (27 minutes)

A tone poem on the theme of loss and remembrance.



A Song Cycle for Soprano, Harp and Strings

also available for Soprano and Piano

Libretto by Eric Ehn

Commissioned and premiered by the San José Chamber Orchestra, Barbara Day-Turner, conductor and Allison Charney, Soprano.

Nine movements (27 minutes)

Opening 1. Your Mouth, Wine 2. Strong as Death 3. Stealth 4. Search 5. Do Not Stir Up Love 6. The Wedding Song 7. Love’s Time and Closing

Adapted from the Old Testament, Song of Songs is a celebration of love. In English and Hebrew.


A Song Cycle for High Voice, Piano, and Clarinet

Eight Songs (13 minutes)

1. Prairie Dawn 2. Recipe 3. No Rain 4. Still Alive 5. Transformation 6. I Call Your Name 7. Bobby Shafto 8. Evening Song

Settings of poems by Willa Cather and Darrah Cloud, the material evokes the vast sky and land of the Midwestern Prairie, and the feeling of belonging to the dream of this country.

SUMMER, 1976

A Song Cycle for High Voice and String Quartet

4 songs (23 minutes)

1. June 2. July 3. August 4. September

Settings of four poems by Daniel Neer.

World Premier March 3, 2016 National Opera Center, New York, NY



Libretto by Rick Davis

For Soprano, Girl Soprano, Narrator, SSSAAATTTBBB Chorus, String Orchestra, Flute, Percussion and Piano

One movement (35 minutes)

Commissioned by The San José Chamber Orchestra in conjunction with the aubrey’s END foundation.

Premiered December 8, 2006 by The San José Chamber Orchestra, under the direction of Barbara Day Turner, in collaboration with The Choral Project, under the direction of Daniel Hughes and featuring the vocal talents of Allison Charney, soprano, Jordan Charney, narrator and Katrina Swift, girl soprano.

The Songbird and the Eagle, based on a traditional Buddhist Jakata Tale, this work for explores the theme of the possibility of peace in the world being attained through the small actions of each individual.


Words of Beethoven set to music

For SSAATTBB Chorus, String Orchestra & Flute Solo

One movement (4 minutes)

Commissioned by The Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia

Alan Harler, Music Director

Premiered October 22, 2005

“The Happiest and Unhappiest of Men is set for eight-part chorus, strings and flute. Sherman’s language is economical, and the text is presented very clearly and naturally. The piece opens with the chorus rhythmically patting their chests to create the sound of a heartbeat. The music begins simply, with each line of text given sequentially to a different voice part in chant-like phrases, creating an effect like a dialog or conversation. Each phrase is separated by modulations of a rather eclectic and distinctly Beethovenesque character. The music builds in intensity as sung phrases and spoken text overlap, until a final crescendo is reached on the enigmatic text that Beethoven wrote on his final composition, the String Quartet in F major, Op. 135: “Must it be? It must be.” The piece ends as it began, with the heartbeat, now softly fading away.” –program note by Michael Moore, ©2005 Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia. All rights reserved.


Libretto by Eric Ehn

For A Cappella Chorus

Six movements (24 minutes)

1. Opening Meditation 2. Missing Girl Found 3. Behind You 4. Names Are Remembered 5. Graveside 6. End

Service For the Dead… is an a cappella choral work written in response to the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina. “Graveside”, the fifth movement of six, is a keening, a culmination and response to what has come before, and a release which might enable life to begin again.

“Graveside” is recorded by Musica Sacra on the Catalyst CD “Of Eternal Light” (out of print) CATALYST 61822.


For Full Chorus, Organ, “Chantress” and Side Drum

Two movements (7 minutes)

Part One: Seven Circles, Part Two: Spinning

Commissioned and premiered in 1995 by The Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia, Alan Harler, conductor.

“A Winter Solstice Ritual” explores the pagan roots of Christmas traditions. It is a celebration of the cycles of the earth, which reflect the cycles of life.


For Full Chorus, Alto or Tenor Soloist and Piano

One movement (2.5 minutes)

Suitable for all levels, Glorious Morn is an inspiring anthem with the passion of gospel and the heart of Dickens.



Libretto by Darrah Cloud

Premiered by Theaterworks, Palo Alto, California (1994)

Winner of Frederick Loewe Foundation Award (1994)

The epic story of the great Lakota warrior Crazy Horse and the last days of the free Lakota people.

THREE VISITATIONS an opera trilogy


Libretto by Paul Selig

Commissioned by New Music Theater Ensemble, St. Paul

Premiered by New Music Theater Ensemble (1996)

Characters on the cusp of self-realization unwittingly collide with elements of the fantastic–stray killers, beach ghosts, bed ghosts– and find their personal trajectories irrevocably altered.

Long Island Dreamer evokes a doo-wop sound (four voices accompanied only by an electric bass). “Are there any Long Island dreamers out there?” asks Amana del Ray, after a stranger of unknown intention appears at the window…In Red Tide, Lutece, a boy of 15 returns to a beach, ostensibly in search of a lifeguard who saved him from drowning a decade previously. In truth, however, he has been drawn there, like a moth to a flame, by a mystical power he cannot explain to his friend, a hopelessly earthbound clod whose name, aptly, is Worm… Like an un-sanitized German Fairy tale, Lamentations is a dark psychodrama where aberrant sexuality and corrosive envy reveal the deeper scripts of ordinary lust and desire.



A musical

Three sisters from Moscow, Iowa return home when their mother decides she is selling the family farm. A celebration of open space and saying goodbye.

Book and lyrics by Darrah Cloud

Orchestrations by Bruce Coughlin (website)

TheatreWorks (1998), Goodspeed (2000), Madison Repertory Theater (2003) and Dallas Summer Musicals (2004)  Directed by Susan H. Schulman


A musical for kids of all ages, based on the “cult classic” by Sam Swope

Book and lyrics by Sam Swope

Music by Kim D. Sherman

General and Mrs. Pinch lead the Liberty Street kids in morning exercises and enforce a huge book of rules. Imagine their horror when the Araboolies move in! This eccentric, colorful, acrobatic, non-English speaking family brings pets, music and games of Remote Tickle and Boola Noola Ball. The Pinches declare war and summon the army! Only the children can save the fun-loving Araboolies and finally allow Liberty Street to live up to its name. Ages 4 and up.

Premiered at Imagination Stage (2007)


a musical adaptation of the novel by Willa Cather

Book and lyrics by Darrah Cloud

The story of Alexandra Bergson’s struggles as a pioneer farmer in an untamed Nebraska prairie.

To license, contact Dramatic Publishing

Premiered at Huntington Theater, Boston (1989),  Broadcast on American Playhouse (1990), Bay Area Critics Circle Award for Musical Score (1991), US Tour and New York City Premier (2002)


A Musical 

Book by Theresa Rebeck, Lyrics by Theresa Rebeck and John Sheehy

Adapted from the 19th century French melodrama, “The Two Orphans” is the tale of two sisters, ex-slaves, one blind, one beautiful who become separated in post Civil War New Orleans and struggle against beggars, thieves, murderers and aristocrats trying to find each other again.

Workshop Performances at New York Stage and Film (1999) Hartford Stage (1999) and New York Theater Workshop (2000)


A play with music and songs

Adapted by Jonathan Moscone and Preston Lane, with sound design and additional orchestrations by Bruce Richardson

An adaptation of the Dickens classic with song and dance.

Produced by Dallas Theater Center (1999-2003)


A theatrical song cycle

Lyrics by Mark Campbell

Music by Debra Barsha, Mark Bennett, Peter Foley, Jenny Giering, Peter Golub, Jake Heggie, Stephen Hoffman, Lance Horne, Gihieh Lee, Steve Marzullo, Brendan Milburn, Chris Miller, Greg Pliska, Duncan Sheik, Kim D. Sherman, Jeffrey Stock, and Joseph Thalken

To license, contact Barbara Hogenson at 212-874-8084.

A solo work that propels a smart, resilient, wry, and ultimately romantic gay New Yorker through the heartaches and triumphs of love in the big city. Mark Campbell’s lyrics on the endlessly surprising experience of urban romance have been set by an eclectic roster of today’s musical artists. Michael Winther premiered this funny, sexy, elegiac, ironic work.

New York Theatre Workshop (2005) Directed by David Schweitzer


A play with music

by Arthur Giron.

Published by Samuel French

A richly textured portrait of small town America from 1911 to the present, the play follows five families through three generations.


A play with music

By Paul Rudnick

Published by Dramatists Play Service

A young and successful television actor relocates to New York, where he is offered the opportunity to play Hamlet onstage, but there’s one problem: He hates Hamlet. His dilemma deepens with the entrance of John Barrymore’s ghost, who arrives intoxicated and in full costume to the apartment that once was his.

Premiered on Broadway at the Walter Kerr Theatre in 1991.