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Episode 9: How to master the last minute U.S. audition

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by Katherine Beck in The All American Accent
04/01/2021

Episode 09: How to master the last minute U.S. audition

Today I am going to share with you how to master the last minute U.S. audition. Your American accent practice isn’t effective unless you are working this way.

In today’s episode, I’m going to share with you how to actually master the American accent by learning the basics of phonetics so you can actually book acting jobs.


Using my method you’ll notice a massive difference in your American accent!

By the time you finish listening, you’ll learn:

  • The key to mastering the last minute U.S. audition
  • Why it’s so important to have a process for learning the American accent
  • How phonetics can help you master the American accent

If this episode inspires you then I’d love to hear from you! Take a screenshot of you listening on your device, post it to your Instagram stories and tag me @katherine_beck_ !

Then follow me on Instagram to go ‘behind the scenes’ with me and my own journey as an American accent coach and Voiceover Actor.


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SHOW TRANSCRIPT

Katherine Beck  00:00

You’re listening to the All American actors podcast, episode nine. In today’s episode, I am going to show you how to master the last minute us audition. That’s coming up next. Ready to go behind the scenes and learn what it really takes to build a sustainable career as a working actor in the US film and TV industry. Join me Catherine back. You’re all American accent coach, as I give you the insight and inspiration to take action on your career, learn my best tips and tricks to performing with an American accent and hear from working actors and other industry professionals. To give you a comprehensive overview of this biz we call showbiz. This is the all American actors podcast. Before we begin today’s episode, I want to start by thanking you for listening to this podcast and showing your support. And if you’re loving what you’re hearing, then go ahead and leave us a five star review. And when you do, you’ll get a chance to be featured as our star listener of the week. And I’ll even give you a shout out right here on the show. So if you’re liking this episode, go ahead and leave us a review. Now my background is in acting. And even though I don’t act as much these days, I have definitely had my fair share of last minute auditions and even last minute jobs. And I actually remember a time when I was working on an animated TV show and I was voicing an American character. And they said, Can you try voicing that character in an Australian accent so we can hear what that sounds like. And I’m recording this in Sydney, by the way. So I’m in a recording studio with authentic Australian speakers. And while I had learned the Australian accent, I was still fairly new to performing with the accent. So I was still a little bit self conscious of my accent and really needed that time and preparation with the material to feel really confident on the day, you know, I would need to map out the accent with the dialogue, map out the intonation, the rhythm, the stress, and really feel the placement in my mouth with those specific words. So when they asked me on the spot as I’m standing in front of the microphone, to just magically switch accents from the American accent to the Australian accent. I was like a deer in headlights. I just kind of froze for a few seconds. I think I had to catch my breath. As my body tensed up and the fear kicked in. I kept thinking well, what are they going to think of my Australian accent? Will they think it’s awful? Oh, no, you know that imposter syndrome kicked in big time. So what did I do? I couldn’t run away because I’m standing there in front of the microphone there waiting. So instead, I took a few breaths to calm my nerves. I got my mouth and the correct placement for the Australian accent. I used my trigger line my accent trigger lines, so is the line that helps me get into the Aussie accent. So I started with that kind of quietly sort of to myself, even though I was right in front of the microphone, and then I just went for it. Now, was it perfect? Was it a perfect flawless Australian accent? Oh, no, it was not. But was it acceptable? Yeah, it was? Was it a good learning experience? Absolutely. You see, in that moment, I learned I can do it. I learned that I had it within me to overcome my fears. But I had to have confidence in myself. And in my ability. I also learned that I needed to prepare better for these circumstances so that I don’t freak out and tense up. But instead, I feel confident about my skill set. And that brings me to our topic for today, which is how to master the last minute us audition so you can feel confident and good about your audition. Now, if you learned or you picked up anything from my story, it may be this that it’s to be more prepared for unexpected circumstances where you just never know when you’re going to need to perform in another accent because it can happen anywhere. You may have an audition or you’re on set and the lines change. And I do remember a time actually I had an audition I missed an entire scene somehow for my email that I hadn’t downloaded. And so I had about five minutes to learn this new scene as I was in the casting office. And instead of freaking out I just went straight to work and I did my best and I held the page and I felt really good about the character and off I went. So you need to take those experiences and roll with it. But the key is that preparation, that practice that you do leading up to your audition so you can feel really good in these unexpected circumstances. The quicker you can learn to prepare, the easier the audition and you need to feel like it’s easier without any extra effort when you’re auditioning in the American accent, auditioning can be nerve racking enough, right? Especially when it’s a really big audition that you really, really want to get. So let’s not put extra pressure on ourselves if we don’t need to. So instead, you need to prepare the accent so you feel prepared. Because you might be thinking, Hey, I got this, I know the accent. I don’t need to practice anymore. I can just refresh my accent next time a US audition comes my way and I will be fine. Wrong. You’re only making things harder for yourself by continuing to think like this. So do yourself a favor and prepare. And when you make things harder for yourself in the audition, it’s a lot harder to book the role. So you might be asking, Well, how do you prepare for that last minute audition, that quick audition that comes up? What’s your process? Well, if you don’t have a process, then that’s a really good place to start. I highly recommend that you have a process for yourself, not just for last minute audition, not for an American accent audition, but just for overall auditioning, whether it’s the American accent, your accent, another accent having a process. My actors inside my online American accent program know all about this because I made what’s called an accent roadmap checklist for them so they can map out the accent for every us audition they get and it makes it so much easier for them. And that’s what you want to do. You want to make things easier for yourself. Now one of the most important things to map out for your audition is your American accent sounds and if you know phonetics, it will make the process so much simpler and easier every time you get a US audition Now if you’ve never heard the term phonetics, it’s defined as the study or classification of speech sounds. So that basically means that every sound that we speak is assigned a unique symbol that helps us identify that speech sound and why that’s so important for us auditions is because we cannot rely on the alphabet to identify our speech sounds to identify our sounds substitution is going from your accent to the American accent. And why is this? Well, when you look at the letter A for example, the letter A can be pronounced several different ways, not just one way. So for example, it could be pronounced as, as an ad or class. And it can also be pronounced as a as in about another way it could be pronounced is ah as in father. So you can see there’s three examples three totally different ways. The letter A can be pronounced. So we can’t just look at the alphabet, the spelling of the word and go oh, okay, well, this is how that word should be pronounced in the American accent. No, because the alphabet is not going to tell us the speech sounds. So if you know your us sounds and you know phonetics, you can save yourself from making silly pronunciation mistakes in your last minute audition, and my actors know how useful it is to apply phonetics to their accent work and how it can clear up so much confusion and pronunciation mishaps once you’ve learned an easy way to implement phonetics into your auditions. And that’s exactly why phonetics is included in my process. And in a really simple way. So my students don’t transcribe all the speech sounds phonetically. Because what you might notice when you do that is your page is filled with all of this writing and it starts to almost look like hieroglyphics. We want to make things visually simple for ourselves. So you got to make the process really easy. And that’s why phonetics is included as part of my process that I teach my students inside my online American accent program so you can feel confident and free performing and auditioning with your amazing American accent. So my recommendation to you to really master those last minute us auditions is to use phonetics and if you’re new to phonetics is to start learning just the basics of phonetics. So you can really start to identify those speech sounds, the sound substitution is going from your accent to the American accent. And you’ll really start to notice a big difference in your accent when you’re auditioning. Now if you’re ready to take action on your us auditions, take them to the next level with your accent authenticity. Then join me on my waitlist for American accent freeway. The doors are opening really soon, so make sure you get on my waitlist to be the first to be notified. As soon as I open up enrollment. You can sign up to be on the waitlist at Katherine beck.com slash waitlist and big news really exciting news if you are ready to get to work on your American accent right now. I am about to host a free five day American accent challenge you can join me January 11 for five All American accent workout, we are going to get you American accent ready for 2021. I did this challenge in October and everyone loved it so much that I am back to do another one. So if you want to join me, you can register at Katherine Beck comm slash challenge. Looking forward to seeing you there and working with you over the five days. And if you ever have any questions you’d like to ask me, by all means, join me on Instagram at Katherine underscore Beck underscore, you can find me there send me a DM let’s chat. Let me know any topics you’d like to hear on the podcast. I would love to hear from you. And coming up next time on the show we are going to be doing some goals setting together for 2021. We’re going to look at why it is important to set goals for yourself as an actor, why not setting goals for yourself could be holding you back in your career. And I’ll show you an easy way to map out your goals to get results in your acting career. And don’t forget to share this show with all your actor friends, let them know what’s coming up next time invite them to tune in with you and learn how to become an all American Actor so you can be the working actor you dream to be until then go practice your American accent and I’ll see you back here next time.

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GET MY FREE GUIDE

These are the EXACT steps I use to teach Actors (from all over the world) how to bridge the gap between process and performance.

Get my free guide!