This collection of new essays explores the role played by women practitioners in the arts during the period often referred to as the Belle Epoque, a turn of the century period in which the modern media (audio and film recording, broadcasting, etc.) began to become a reality. Exploring the careers and creative lives of both the famous (Sarah Bernhardt) and the less so (Pauline Townsend) across a remarkable range of artistic activity from composition through oratory to fine art and film directing, these essays attempt to reveal, in some cases for the first time, women's true impact on the arts at the turn of the 19th century.