TH 4399
Theatre: Special Projects
Accent/Dialect Coach
2 cr.

Lauren Roth

Office: MPAC 144
Phone: 7243

The Accent/Dialect Coach addresses the pronunciation, sound, and lilt of every word spoken in the performed accent/dialect, NOT THE INTREPERTATION.

Accent – one who speaks in a language from other than their native country 

Dialect – one who speaks in their own language, but from a different region of their own country

Pre-Rehearsal Preparation includes:  CONSULTING WITH THE DIRECTOR

1. Finding several, varied source recordings of native speakers from which directors can choose how they want the characters to sound.

2. Preparing a sound sheet based on the chosen, native sound sample recording.

3. Learning to speak the accent/dialect themselves.

4. Trying to get familiar with the performance space and anticipate the difference in acoustics between the rehearssal and performance spaces.

5. Meeting with the appropriate actor(s) pre-rehearsals, or the first rehearsal, going over the sound sheet(s), and working the prepared  practice sentences from the sound sheet(s).

6.  Being prepared to offer the actors additional resources.

Concurrent with Rehearsals:

Either pre-rehearsals or concurrently, meet with actors outside of rehearsals (usually during the day), either individually or in small groups, for 20-minute tutorial sessions.  Address every line and word spoken in the accent/dialect regarding its pronunciation, sounds, and lilt. Meet as many times as necessary.
During Rehearsals:

1. LISTEN. DO NOT WATCH!  Comments to the actors should never be about the acting or the blocking.  Eyes can deceive and trick the ears into thinking one is hearing what one is not.

2. Attend rehearsals as soon as the actors are off book. Give written notes to individual actors after rehearsals, or when they are dismissed, saving verbal notes only for what cannot be written, or what is common to many.  Take up as little rehearsal time with notes as possible, and always ask for permission from the Director to give verbal notes immediately following rehearsal.

3. Once out of tutorials, have the actors speak in the accent/dialect from the time they enter the rehearsal space until they leave, including breaks.

4. Listen to runs once in the actual performance space and make any adjustments needed for the acoustics of the new space.