Making Sure You’re on the Right Lines

Making Sure You’re on the Right Lines

Making Sure You're on the Right LinesIf you are not busying yourself picking up a dialect for a particular role or audition, you will be well advised to do a little studying up on the many types of dialects or accents used most frequently in the work you’d like to do. There are several hundred dialects in India.

The difference between a dialect and an accent will better our understanding. Someone with a dialect speaks English as their first language, and it is colored by the place in which they live. Americans, Australians, and British Islanders all have English as their native language, but speak it differently.

An accent will arise when someone speaks a language that is not his or her native tongue. If you were speaking English, but were playing someone from East Europe or the Middle East, you would be speaking with an accent.

As an exercise, tune into national television programs or regional television programs and take note of any dialects or accents used. If you can’t identify the dialect or accent, take a sound sample to a dialect coach to sort it out.

After having selected a dialect or two, you need to focus on the process of change. Go about this process of learning a dialect in the way you’d think of coming up with a character voice. In creating a character voice, you must not sound like someone with a voice or dialect that is likely to cause people not to take you seriously. A full-blown character must be created for each dialect. This character can always be modified later but it makes practical sense to have a three-dimensional person from which you can deviate.

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