Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Are you having a hard time nailing down the British English or American English accent?

No one does it better than Hollywood when it comes to accent training.

In today’s episode, you’ll meet Ron Carlos from Bold Voice who has worked with actors from Game of Thrones to Hunger Games to Monsterland.

Bold Voice is an accent training app that helps non-native English speakers use clear pronunciation.

Download the app for iOS and Google Play

In today’s episode, you will hear Ron share three tactics that he uses with movie stars to help them speak in different accents.

You can use these tactics to improve your own English pronunciation.

Get inspired by Hollywood in today’s episode!

Getting to Know Ron Carlos

Lindsay introduces Ron Carlos in today’s episode.

Ron Carlos is a Hollywood voice, speech, and dialect coach based in Los Angeles, California.

He has a Master’s in Voice and Speech from Harvard University and he has worked with actors on Netflix, Marvel, and Broadway.

He has worked with Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Kaitlyn Dever, Sam Clafflin, and Harvey Fierstein.

Lindsay asks Ron how he has entered this type of work where he gets to interact with so many famous Hollywood actors and actresses.

Ron shares that he was originally training to be an actor himself.

As part of his training, he had to take a voice and speech class.

He came from upstate New York which is why he had a very regional accent.

His speech teacher saw his progress in learning accents and how he was able to help some of his colleagues.

He was then offered by his mentor to train actors on accents for roles in Hollywood.

Ron is an accent coach with the Bold Voice app.

This is an application that can help you with accent training in American English.

The application gives you access to several Hollywood accent coaches with the aid of artificial intelligence to guide you in your pronunciation work.

Three Tips From Ron Carlos in Improving Your English Accent

Lindsay asks for advice from Ron on how students can improve their accent.

Ron mentions Kaitlyn Dever as a case study for the learnings he is going to share in today’s episode.

Kaitlyn Dever plays the character Toni in Monsterland on Hulu.

Her character is someone from Louisiana and she is originally from Texas.

Here are the tips and strategies Ron used to get her ready for the role:

  • Models and examples for the accent

Ron researched to find someone who is close in age, ethnicity, race, and socioeconomic status to Kaitlyn’s character in the series.

He then listened to the sound of the English language the way they speak it and learned what they were doing.

He also observed the usage of mouth, lips, and tongue.

Ron then gave Kaitlyn feedback on what she did correctly and what she could change or improve on.

  • Listen to the musicality of the speech

Ron says that the musicality of speech is pitch, speed, rhythm, and volume.

This is not only directly related to what you’re saying but also the context of what you are saying.

This is what they call suprasegmentals.

Lindsay asks Ron if this depends on what is happening in the scene in the story.

Ron says yes, and you have to match what the model is saying and what the script is saying.

He gives an example where not all accents would say the line in the same way.

  • Practice materials

Ron shares the importance of practicing making the sounds to get the right accent.

Lindsay likens this to going to the gym and lifting weights to build muscles.

So relating this to mastering the accent, you need to train the muscles of your mouth and continuously exercise the skills to be able to nail the accent.

Takeaway

Ron shares with the listeners that the accent they have is perfect.

He encourages you to work on the skills you want to improve on slowly and forgive yourself if you make mistakes.

Don’t stop when you make mistakes.

Just put in the work and effort to bring your level higher than before.

It can be slow work but it often just takes patience with ourselves.

Don’t get hung up on perfecting the accent so much that you forget that your own accent works fine.

What is important is we are able to connect and be better every time we try.

Lindsay says that your accent is what makes you, you.

Follow Ron’s advice and get inspired from today’s Hollywood example.

What is the tip that Ron shared you think is most helpful for you?

Share it in the comments below and let’s help each other improve our English-speaking skills.

Ron’s Bio:

Ron Carlos is a Hollywood voice, speech, and dialect coach based in Los Angeles, California. With a Master’s in Voice and Speech from Harvard University, Ron works with actors on productions from Netflix, Marvel, and Broadway. Ron is also an accent coach at BoldVoice, an app that helps non-native English-speaking professionals to speak confidently, available on the Apple App Store and Google Play.

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