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  • Hello.

  • My name is Sammi, and I am from Paris, France originally.

  • From Atlanta, Georgia.

  • From Sydney, Australia.

  • London, England.

  • Moscow, Russia.

  • There's been a lot more,

  • but those are the ones that come to mind.

  • My name is Sammi Grant, I'm a dialect coach and I'm legally blind.

  • (people speaking at once)

  • A dialect coach is someone who teaches actors accents.

  • I can do accents from around the world.

  • I don't really even have a count anymore

  • because I've taught so many.

  • I mostly work for the stage.

  • I've started dabbling in television.

  • One of the reasons I think that I took to voice work

  • and dialect work is because I'm more in tune with hearing.

  • So people are always like, “Oh, you have heightened hearing.”

  • I don't like that phrase

  • 'cause it sounds like we have like superhero hearing

  • like we're Daredevil or something.

  • Oh, you're just like Daredevil.

  • No.

  • But I do have more a tuned hearing.

  • I use my hearing more than a sighted person

  • because I have to.

  • For a London accent, placement's really important

  • so the placements like really forwards in the mouth.

  • So there's the southern accent that lacks the R.

  • The Australian accent quite different

  • than the British accent

  • so they don't really say like, buttah,

  • it's a little more like butter.

  • Transatlantic accent is very dramatic.

  • It's what you hear in those old time movies.

  • It's kind of like a, well, well I don't know,

  • is he ever gonna love me?

  • Well I just want him to love me.

  • But if I'm too expressive maybe he won't, I don't know.

  • For Russian accent you want to sort of feel like

  • you swallow some in back of the mouth.

  • This is very stereotype, but like the Jewish New York mother.

  • This is what I do a lot with my friends.

  • You know, kind of like the, why don't you call me?

  • You know I sit around and wait for your calls all day

  • and you never call me.

  • I don't mind, it's okay, you know, just whatever.

  • I just pay for your college tuition, it's okay.

  • It's a pretty in depth process teaching someone an accent.

  • I get sent this script and I try to gather everything I can.

  • So that goes much beyond just, where does this take place?

  • It also factors in time period

  • and education level, class level,

  • and I also think about the gender of my character.

  • And then I talk with the director to sort of you know

  • touch base on their concept for the voice of the show.

  • And then I kind of go on a hunt

  • for authentic speakers.

  • Once I've gathered all that information

  • I present it to the actor.

  • We're now surrounded by so many voices

  • that are emotionless.

  • You know by these automated voices that sound very fake.

  • Where it's like, I'd love to help you,

  • I'm a computer that's here to help you

  • with whatever you want all the time.

  • I love meeting new people and hearing their voices.

  • I, you know, immediately go into dialect coach mode

  • and I wanna sort of imitate them.

  • I just wanna like experience their voice

  • and experience what their vocalizing.

  • (people speaking at once)

Hello.

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