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Episode 6: Why most Non U.S. Actors fail at mastering the American accent.

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

Episode 06: Why most Non U.S. Actors fail at mastering the American accent.

Have you wondered why most Actors fail to master the American accent? The American accent is a lot harder to learn than you think, especially when you need to sound like an authentic American speaker.

In today’s episode, I’m going to talk about a smarter way to learn the American accent so you can audition with confidence.


When you start thinking about the American accent differently you’ll start to notice a change in your accent.

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

  • Why most Non U.S. Actors fail at mastering the American accent
  • Why you shouldn’t rush into filming a U.S. accent reel
  • When to ask your Dialect coach for feedback
  • A better way to practice your 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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LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

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SHOW TRANSCRIPT

Katherine Beck  00:00

You’re listening to the All American actors podcast, Episode Six. In today’s episode, we’re going to cover why most actors fail at mastering the American accent 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 show them. This is the all American actors podcast. Before we jump into today’s episode, I want to thank you so much for listening and showing your support. It means the world to me. And if you are loving what you’re hearing, please go ahead and leave us a review. And when you leave us a five star review for this podcast, you may just get featured as our star listener of the week, and we’ll give you a special shout out right here on the show. So if you like this episode, go ahead and leave us a review. Okay, let’s jump in. And I just want to start with this, I may be an American accent coach. But that does not mean that I have not failed at mastering another accent. In fact, if you know anything about me, even just a little bit about me, I have lived in Sydney, Australia for about 15 years now and moved here from LA. And when I did, I was an actor and a voiceover artist. And I so desperately wanted to continue working over in the Australian market. So I figured well got to have an Australian accent, right. And I studied for three months with a dialect coach once a week. And I thought that’s enough time for me to really, you know, smash that accent sound authentic film, something to submit to my agent to show her I am ready to audition for Australian jobs. And I remember when I did submit that scene to her and looking back at it. She was right. It was okay. It wasn’t great. It was just okay. And my accent was not authentic. And I thought that well, even though I knew it wasn’t authentic that I could submit it to her anyway, thinking that it was good enough so that I could just start auditioning. And so she was less than thrilled with my accent, I had to go back to the drawing board, basically and figure out why my accent wasn’t 100% What was I doing wrong? And what do I need to do to really master this accent so I can start booking roles in this new accent. So I totally get it through my own struggles. And I did persevere. And I did finally get to that stage where I was authentic in the accent and started to book work. But I understand I get it, it’s very easy to fail at mastering the American accent. It’s very easy to fail and mastering another accent other than your own. And today, that’s exactly what we’re going to explore why that is why it’s easy to fail, what to look out for, and how to actually master the American accent. So let’s start by talking about the biggest mistake you can make when mastering the American accent. And that is thinking that you’ve already mastered the accent. Let me explain. And that’s kind of where I was, you know, years and years ago with the Australian accent. So for example, with me when I was learning the Aussie accent, I was so confident with my skills of learning accents, because I was always really good at learning accents that I thought I had it. I thought I was good. But it wasn’t until my agent told me that I wasn’t ready yet that I realized that my accent wasn’t as good as I thought it was inside my own head. So my advice to you is to seek assistance and feedback from a dialect coach well before you submit anything to your agent, because you really don’t want to do what I did. You want to learn from my mistake. Don’t rush the process. If it takes you six months to master the accent, then let it take you six months. Don’t feel like you have to rush into filming something to show your agent just because you gave yourself a deadline of three months to film a scene. And by then you want your accent to be perfect. That was my timeline. But in hindsight, what I should have done is when I filmed it, I should have sent it to my dialect coach to have her watch it give me her advice as to whether or not she felt like the accent was ready to submit to my agent before I actually did. But I was so determined to do it in that three month timeframe that I lost sight of the fact that my accent wasn’t quite ready and I think as an actor for most Have you, you know, you’ve grown up watching American TV shows watching American movies, you’ve heard the accent a lot. And you think you’ve got a good ear for the accent that you can pick up the accent really easily. So you think, well, surely it shouldn’t be too hard to perform authentically in the accent as well. But it’s that silly little word performance that gets in the way of having that authentic American accent. That’s where we get trapped. Because once we get into performance, if we don’t have the right training, the right muscle memory in place, if we haven’t had enough hours of practice, and if we aren’t developing the character, like an American character, then we will always fall short in performance. Therefore, we won’t have a genuine, authentic American accent performance, a genuine, authentic American character. And if that happens, you’re going to make it so much harder on yourself to not only book the role, but actually get the auditions in the first place. Because your agent isn’t going to want to submit you if your accent isn’t authentic, right? So I asked you this? What if we do things differently? What if we actually get ourselves to a place where we feel confident that we have mastered the American accent in performance? What if we were a little bit more patient with ourselves instead of rushing the process? And what if instead of practicing our American accent, once a week, for an hour? What if we tried practicing five to 10 minutes a day, for five days a week, and found ways to bring it into our daily routine? What if we made a commitment that each day we’re going to speak in the American accent when we leave the house without a script, you know, just bringing it into our day to day conversation? Because I promise you, if you start making these small shifts, you will start to notice a big difference. And how do I know this is true? This is exactly what I did when I was learning to master the Australian accent. This is how I learned to create awareness, to inhabit the accent to connect my voice and myself to the accent. This is how I learned to create awareness. The most important thing I think, to really mastering the accent, that self awareness and to inhabit the accent to really connect it to my voice and myself. No one else can do it for you. But you. So if you are committed to achieving this goal of mastering the American accent in performance, then you need to take action and do the work, the day by day work. And an all starts with you. I really hope this episode has helped you out to give you some insight and inspiration about thinking about things differently when it comes to performing with your American accent. And if you want any more great tips from me, make sure you download my free guide how to master the all American accent and that’s where I will walk you through my seven step process on how to perform with an American accent. Just head over to Katherine Beck calm slash accent to grab your copy. And if you ever have any questions you’d like to ask me, join me on Instagram at Katherine underscore Beck underscore. You can find me there, send me a DM and let’s chat. I’d love to hear from you. Or if you have any questions or topics you would like to hear me talk about on the podcast, send me a DM and let me know. And coming up next time on the show. We’re talking to LA talent manager Karli Dumanis she’s going to be sharing with you her perspective on what it’s like for working actor in today’s industry. Now make sure to share the show with all your actor friends, let them know what’s coming up next time and invite them to tune in with you and learn how to become the 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.

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!