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All About Accents

Accents can be beneficial for specific projects, however, a lot of clients look for an artist with a generic, neutral accent. It's important not to lose your accent, but being able to tone it down and having the ability to change it when needed can be beneficial in the voice over business. Being able to sound like you are from nowhere is what some clients want!

 

On the other hand, it's increasingly becoming more popular to use voice over artists with regional accents. Happy Scousers, sexy Scots and funny West Country accents are all popping up in voice overs on both television and radio. So, if you have an accent that isn't particularly memorable or one that is very strong, how can you learn different accents to make you more versatile?

 

1. YouTube.

YouTube is your new bible when it comes to learning accents. Whether you decide on a tutorial to teach you to talk like you're on the set of The Only Way is Essex or you want to learn a bit of the Queen's English, YouTube has it all. From professional videos on accent and dialect to uploaded 'How To' videos from locals, the site can really help.

 

2. Online Dictionaries.

We're not talking about the Oxford English when we speak about dictionaries here. Online slang dictionaries often have sound samples and can give you an insight into dialects from different regions. Who knew “I'm going home” translates to “Am gan hyem” in Geordie? Google your chosen accent and learn a few phrases to really get you into the zone when perfecting your accent.

 

3. Visit your Chosen Region.

If you really want to perfect a certain accent, visit the region. You will naturally learn the tone, intonations and sounds of the accent you want to learn by immersing yourself into an area where that's all you can hear. Pronunciation of certain words is the difference between being good at an accent and being faultless, so listen carefully and practice.

 

4. Neutralise Your Accent.

Being aware of the words, intonation and pronunciation of words is also helpful when you are trying to lose an accent. Try to speak with no accent and pick up where you are falling back into old patterns. Recording your voice and listening to it back, realising your mistakes, can be a great help for those trying to neutralise their accent.

 

 

Learning a new accent can open new doors and give you more opportunities as a voice over artist. Having the ability to completely neutralise your accent is also the most beneficial tool you can have for generic voice over jobs. Once you have one or two accents perfected, it will become easier to pick up more, and you will understand how accents gradually change as you travel around the United Kingdom and Ireland. You'll be switching accents from Downton Abbey to Geordie Shore in no time!

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