Robert S. Cohen | composer

Voice & Theater Music


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Edison Invents (2005)

Baritone, orchestra

Duration: c. 35'

Edison Invents dramatizes the life of Thomas Edison, a great and often underrated American whose inventions literally changed the everyday life of people around the world. The basic theme of the piece is a consideration of how Edison, like many great figures of history, compromised his personal relationships in order to achieve greatness.

Read the review in the New York Times here.

Read the review in Playbill here.


Parable (1986)

Soprano, chamber orchestra

Duration: c. 24'

This song cycle of English translations of 10 Japanese Haiku explores the cycle of the seasons and life.

Read the review in Hyde Park Herald.


Song of the Goddess Isis (2024) NEW!

Soprano & piano

Duration: c. 6'

Text by Robert S. Cohen

The premiere performance was given on May 22, 2024, at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music, New York, New York.


Suburb (2000)

8 performers, piano (small ensemble)

Duration: c. 120'

Suburb takes an insightful, witty, and nuanced view of the world of the lawnmower, the barbecue, and the mall, exploring the suburb’s rites and rituals with a four-person chorus (expandable to eight) and four main characters. The stories of these four people-interwoven with the chorus’s frequent musical reveries on subjects like mowing the lawn, the mall, and the perfection of perfectly grilled meat-form the road map of Suburb.

Winner of the Richard Rodgers Development Award.

Read the review in Variety magazine here.

Read the review in Playbill here.