Know Your North American Neutral Accent!
Unless otherwise indicated, all voice over jobs (and on camera jobs) require a neutral North American Accent. What is it?
A great example is CNN personalties, whom all speak a very neutral American accent. This means no regional reference to where the speaker might originate. In Canada there are varying degrees of discernible accents from East to West. A good reference of what NOT TO DO is the weather channel! Listen carefully to ‘OUT’ and ABOUT’ and SOUTH’ very commonly giving away a Canadian (EH!) Yes that is another dead giveaway of your country/region of origin. A general rule is the lateral sounding vowels, especially the ‘O’ and ‘OU’ sounds, becoming AW and OW for neutral NA Accent. Keep in mind Canadian language originates from England with French influences. Canadians have adopted many similar pronunciations. This takes practice to 'undo' and is a must for any serious voice talent. These are some of the most common words we need to know so we don’t get caught!
Left column is correct spelling, right column is correct phonetic pronunciation for Neutral N.A. accent. There are many more but this is a start!
Out - OWT House - HOWSE
Doubt - DOWT
Sorry - SAWRRY
Worry - WARRY Boat - BOTE About - ABOWT On - AWN John - JAWN Dawn / Don - DAWN & DOHN
Want the full list and more VO training tips? Shoot us an email or give us a call about a private VO session