Rose Miranda Hall is a Canterbury based composer focusing on interdisciplinary collaborative work to challenge preconceptions through opera and contemporary music theatre. Rose’s current focus is on ‘determinedly difficult women’. Continuing on the theme of her first chamber opera La Pucelle -based on the trial of Joan of Arc - Rose recently completed a chamber opera named Dead Equal with librettist Lila Palmer (who met each other at a Streetwise Opera Training Day). Dead Equal looks at another female warrior: the first world war nurse turned soldier, Flora Sandes. Fighting on the front line in Serbia in 1916, 100 years later Dead Equal also sees Flora’s female soldier successors go into full combat roles in the British Army. Dead Equal was performed 25th November 2016 at ENO’s Lilian Bayliss House with the Helios Collective’s Formations scheme. 2017 will see Palmer and Hall continue to develop Dead Equal with director Jonathan Moore to take to a bigger platform and expand into a full operatic work in the States.
Rose was awarded the Nichola LeFanu composition award in 2012 for Journey to Recovery: A Requiem for the Addicted and the Recovering which took the standard liturgical texts and placed them against existing quotes, pieces of poetry and prose alongside texts commissioned from recovering addicts for the project. A continuation of the theme of addiction and recovery led to her composing And the Ocean Smells Like Lilacs in Late August… in 2013, a song cycle for baritone and piano written for and using poetry by the American Pulitzer Prize winning poet Franz Wright who passed away in 2014. Rose was awarded second prize for For Amber with English Collective of Singers and Speakers who commissioned work with poetry by Marian Lines which went on to be performed at the London Festival of Song in Covent Garden by Stephen Varcoe and Nigel Foster.
Rose’s first fully operatic work is La Pucelle. The piece explores the many faces of Joan of Arc as presented through her detailed but troublesome trial record. Here, three singers portray the multifaceted Joan: Joan the Maid, Joan the Heretic and Joan the Knight who all fight for their life in the court room. Theatrical work also includes a collaboration with soprano Jay Green and clarinettist Patrick Burnett on Death Hath Ten Thousand Several Doors, a work which saw the creation of a graphic notation for the work which was developed and used again for mezzo-soprano Fliss Bott and cellist James Whittle in Ah, I will kiss thy mouth… at Centre Stage for Female Composers. Rose also created a graphic notation with oboist Giacomo Pozzuto for Michelangelo - Studies of Figures & Limbs: Six Sketches for Solo Oboe which are a response to Britten’s Temporal Variations and inspired by a page of Studies of Figures and Limbs by Michelangelo.
Continuing to challenge perceptions and preconceptions through her work Rose will be collaborating with: Heart to Heart Theatre (playwright Melanie Ball and Director Joe Ball) on a work looking at mental health in women’s prisons; poet David Gilbert who writes about his own experiences of mental health; LGBT+ poet laureate Judy Howson; poet Jessica D’Este, and will continue to write works on ‘determinedly difficult women’ with Lila Palmer (both as a librettist and a performer). A collaboration with David Gilbert (who writes about his own experiences of mental health and is an Artist-in-residence at Bethlem Gallery) will work with him as a spoken word artist, mezzo-soprano Lila Palmer and a cellist on a cycle of poetry exploring the cyclic journey of mental health issues.