On Monday May 25th, I won the inaugural Go Write A Musical prize of $25,000 and a year-long grant at New York SongSpace at the Lilly Awards, honouring women in theatre.


It was a surprise! Many of my family and friends had organised and hid 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.



July-August 2018

Composing music and lyrics to a brand new community play with music as part of Cornerstone Theater Company's initiative in Flushing, Queens.

Chicago Shakespeare Theatre logo.jpeg


August 2018

Playing Lady Castelmaine in the national premiere of NELL GWYNN, a new play at Chicago Shakespeare Theater which won Best Comedy at the Olivier Awards when it transferred from the Globe to the West End in London.

thank you for coming to my ant fest show!


written & performed by EMILY GARDNER XU HALL

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, which is on world tour, and UNDERGROUND RAILROAD GAME, currently on US tour.


Emily is an actor with an MFA from NYU Grad Acting. 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, and 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 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. For more about the show, click here.



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.