Accent and Voice Coach
How I Handle
Based out of Los Angeles, I offer an alternative approach to “accent reduction,” or, as it’s more forebodingly known, “accent elimination.”
I work from four foundational principles:
1) An accent is a collection of speech habits.
2)Everybody, in every language, has a collection of speech habits (an accent).
3) Every spoken language has many understandable accents (as many as it has speakers!).
4)No language has one “correct” set of habits that make it the “right way” to speak the language.
Certain accents, whether real or invented, are the lucky recipients of more prestige and commercial viability than others. I would argue that more prestige or marketability does not make these accents “correct” or “standard” – it just makes them useful, and a smart investment for the accent learner. The invented “General American” accent is one of those useful accents, even though very few people speak it naturally as part of their everyday lives. Since I view “General American” as one among many interesting and understandable accents, I approach it like I do any other, using the skills of Accent Acquisition.
Accent Acquisition, unlike “accent reduction,” doesn’t focus on “fixing” or “correcting” your speech; your habits in English are just as interesting and powerful as anybody else’s. Instead, I guide you through Accent Acquisition to find your version of a “General American” accent, building new skills and developing them into new habits.
Taking the abilities, curiosity, and awareness that you already possess, we tighten our focus to “General American” and figure out what set of habits makes up that particular accent. We then build a practice program using exercises, practice routines, and drills that I’ve developed to specifically target the sounds, intonations, and patterns of “General American.” Building upon the principles of Knight-Thompson Speechwork®, Accent Acquisition allows you to find ownership of all of your speech habits, new and old.
Instead of “reducing” your accent or “eliminating” your current habits altogether, use Accent Acquisition to expand your possibilities and add to your list of skills. Contact me here to to learn more about how Accent Acquisition would be best suited to your needs.