Dialect Coaching

Our manner of speaking informs everyone around us, whether we like it or not. Why not make it a conscious choice? Speech is regulated by muscles which can be trained, even if you don't "have an ear" for dialects.  

I offer a number of services as a speech and dialect coach:

Semester-Length Class in American Theater Speech: To the right is a sample syllabus for a semester long course which might be found in a BFA or MFA program for speech. The course begins with intense training in the Standard American (SA) Dialect. From there it continues into training Received Pronunciation (RP) and further classes would be devoted to diagnosing other accents/dialects of English, including how to teach oneself a new dialect or accent. SA and RP are chosen for the fact that they include sounds not normally found in colloquial speech, but are necessary for further dialect work.

Other services:
Accent Reduction: Like it or not, American companies want to sound "American". If you have a big interview or a presentation coming up, I can help you make choices in your speech patters that will conform more to American patterns of speech.

Speech Coaching: Speaking clearly is essential for theater actors. Make sure your audience can understand you, and that you are not putting undue pressure on your vocal instrument with muddy speech! This covers both Standard and General American in ways which are easier on the tongue and on the ear.

Dialect Acquisition: Actors must also be able to take on the sounds of other places. By using source material from interviews and natural speakers, we can diagram what is happening in a person's speech and emulate it, rather than painting with a general wash of that country's way of speaking English.

Dialects & Accents: General American, Standard American, RP (Standard British), Scottish, Irish, Cockney, Estuary, Midlands, Chicano, Puerto Rican, Mountain Southern, Plantation Southern, Jamaican, Mid-Western, New England, Bronx, Xhosa, German, French, Russian, Korean.

*Note* There is a long history of using speech as a way of segregating social and racial strata, so I would like to say that all manners of speaking are beautiful and deserve to exist in the world, but are not always the right tool for the job.