Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


School of Music


Music Performance

First Advisor

Jacob Will


The social and professional networks that grew out of Paris’ vibrant theatrical and salon culture in the late 19th century supported a number of female artists in somewhat “non-traditional” roles. While the careers and influence of artists such as the sculptor Hélène Bertaux and singer-composer Pauline Viardot have been thoroughly researched in recent years, little attention has been paid to the life and work of the coloratura soprano, actor, pedagogue, and composer Delphine Ugalde. During her performing career, Ugalde was highly regarded for her ability to portray both male and female characters. After retiring from the stage, she engaged in many musical pursuits which were traditionally male-dominated such as composing and directing. Utilizing digitized historical records and archival materials obtained during a recent SPARC-supported trip to Paris, this study establishes a more complete biographical sketch of Ugalde’s life, and shows how her choices on- and off-stage challenged accepted behavioral norms for women in late 19th-century France.