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How To Do A South African Accent

How To Do A South African Accent

South Africa is one of the less conspicuous of the English-speaking countries. Actors can use this video to learn the basics of the South African accent, which they can then tailor to their needs on stage.

Hello I'm an actor and a voice coach, and I teach people how to make changes to their voice.

The key to any accent is to find the sounds that are specific to those accents and isolate it. So when we're looking at the South African accent, I think the biggest sound that helps me as an actor is the 'i' sound in 'right', 'sign', and 'live'. It become more like an 'aw-i'.

A bit like the 'aw-i' in 'oil' and 'boy'. So, we have 'right', 'sign', and 'live'. Don't go all the way.

Don't go 'royt', 'soyn', it's not going to sound right. It's a little flatter, 'oi'. 'Right', 'sign, and 'live'.

When you hear that word 'right', you can also hear the 'r' sound. Now this isn't quite a rolled 'r'. You don't want to go 'rrraahyt'.

Some people do that, it's an older sound from South Africa, but most young speakers do 'right'. Just a tapped 'r'. It's like rolling your 'r', but just for one little roll.

'R'. 'Right'. It might help you to think about putting a letter 'h' before that.

'Hright'. 'Hright', like that. Now, that depends what part of South Africa the speaker is from.

It varies. Also, notice the 't' at the end of 'hright'. It's really well-pronounced, it's spat out.

It's not 'right'. It's 'hrightt'. This is going to help you a lot.

The South African accent tends to hit its consonants very hard, bit machine gun-like. 'Tip', 'big', 'him'. "Like this.

What a fright I got." So this is in my own native accent, "What a fright I got." Quite fluid, one word links to the next.

And in South African, "Whatt a frightt I gott." I find also is, something that helps is the 'aa' sound. The 'aa' that we have in 'man' and 'ham'.

In the South African accent, this is much more like an 'eh' sound. So I often launch myself into my South African by going, "Hrightt mehn." 'Mehn'.

'Mehn', rather than 'man'. "Hrightt mehn." Finally, let's look at the 'ih' sound, in 'tin' and 'pit', and 'him'.

This becomes more like an 'eh', so we get 'tin' and 'pin', and 'him', like this. Like an 'e', like the 'e' in cheese. 'Him'.

'Tin', 'pin', 'him'. So try that again. "Hwhatt a frightt I gott.

" Anyway, that's all the time we've got today. There are, of course, many features for the accent. My name is Garreth Jameson.

Thanks very much..