Emily won the inaugural Lilly Award for a Female Composer of $25,000 ("Go Write A Musical"), mentored by Broadway producer Stacey Mindich (Dear Evan Hansen), and a year-long grant at New York SongSpace at the Lilly Awards for women in theatre.

It was a surprise! Many of my family and friends were hiding backstage, then as I was yanked up the aisle towards the stage, they came out for the big reveal. This is a video taken by Sathya Sridharan onstage of Lilly Awards founder Julia Jordan welcoming me to the stage.

 

“NELL GWYNN” at chicago shakespeare

At Chicago Shakespeare Theater until November 4th. Emily is playing Lady Barbara Castlemaine and Louise de Kerouaille in the national premiere of NELL GWYNN by Jessica Swale, a new play at Chicago Shakespeare Theater directed by Christopher Luscombe.

The play transferred from The Globe to the West End, and won the 2015 Olivier for Best Comedy.

Tickets and more about the show here!


RECENT writing PROJECTS, SUMMER 2018

I AM THIS FOR YOU

book, music and lyrics by EMILY GARDNER XU HALL

A play/EDM pop concert/animation. Performance at Ars Nova ANT Fest, fully staged with a cast of 8 and live band. Directed by Kat Yen, lights by Christina Watanabe, choreography by Michael Raine, stage managed by Jordan Liau and produced by John Albert Harris.

Inspired by the Japanese phenomenon of maid cafés, you become the customer as Etsuko and her fellow maids perform their superfun electronica pop just for you — about sex and youthfulness, consent and the performance of female sexuality. You be the male gaze, and we will be your beautiful dream. Welcome home!

Ars Nova is one of the leading theatres in New York supporting new work. They have supported and produced works such as Dave Malloy's THE GREAT COMET OF 1812, which went to Broadway starring Josh Groban, Bess Wohl's SMALL MOUTH SOUNDS (world tour), and UNDERGROUND RAILROAD GAME (US tour, Edinburgh Fringe 2018).

the cardinal

PLAY BY CUSI CRAM, MUSIC AND LYRICS BY EMILY GARDNER XU HALL

Commission from Cornerstone Theatre Company to write a brand new play with music inspired by stories of the Flushing, Queens community. Directed by Juliette Carrillo, the production featured live puppetry, choreography, a live band, and a cast of Queens residents and was part of Cornerstone's Flushing Initiative program.


actING

Emily holds an MFA from NYU's Graduate Acting Program. Here are links to her acting resume, photos of her theatre work or photos of film work

As an actor and singer, she acted and sang in a run of a musical at the Arden Theatre Company in which she also played four instruments. She received a great review in Bryony Lavery's two-hander, Stockholm, from Ben Brantley of the New York Times.

Emily is a composer-lyricist, a member of the BMI Musical Theatre Writing Workshop, and a member of the Musical Theatre Factory Writers Group. Studio Tisch held a reading of her original musical Untitled Cherry Orchard Musical at Studio Tisch, and a workshop presentation of her new Cymbeline musical. She also made her debut as a composer at MuseMatch X at 54 Below last July, and performed her own songs at Rattlestick Playwrights' Theatre New Songs Now! where she was selected as a featured singer-songwriter.

As a playwright, Emily was selected as one of four playwrights in Rising Circle Theater Collective's INKtank for her full-length play with music I Am This For You. The play development process culminated in a reading of I AM THIS FOR YOU at Rising Circle's PlayRISE festival, and two weeks later, a fully staged performance with a cast of 8 at Ars Nova ANTFest. For more about the show, click here.


EARLIER THIS YEAR

BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL BUT IT AIN'T ALWAYS PRETTY

Public Theater, Shiva Stage Lafayette St

Written and performed by Kareem M. Lucas. Music composed and performed by Emily Gardner Xu Hall. Part of the Under The Radar Festival 2018 at the Public Theater. Click here for more details.

 

radio 930: children of the revolution

American Theatre of Actors 314 W 54th St

Emily played Vanda in an industry showing of the new musical. Conceived by Charles Yurick and Nancy Paris, book by Josh Billig and music direction by Doug Katsaros, produced by Ken Davenport.

Under the Radar icon.png


new york times Ben brantley review

In Stockholm, the Blades are Drawn from the Start (click here for the full review).

 Emily Gardner Hall and Jason Babinsky in STOCKHOLM

Emily Gardner Hall and Jason Babinsky in STOCKHOLM

‘A precision-tooled performance by Emily Gardner Hall…

Ms. Hall gives natural life to Kali’s extreme, lacerating ambivalence. This young performer is remarkably smooth in conveying spikiness...

Todd and Kali are dancing fools and their range of movement swings wide. Sometimes they skip about as blithely as Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds in “Singin’ in the Rain,” but their natural form would seem to be the apache dance, with its all-out brutality.

[They] make us believe that from the moment they met, everything Todd and Kali have done has been charged with dangerous contradiction.’

Ben Brantley, New York Times, August 24th 2013 

Or read the full review without visiting the NY Times website here.