ACCENT MODIFICATION & ELOCUTION TRAINING
‘It is a widely known and increasingly well-explored fact that accent has an impact on how an individual is perceived by others, and therefore on the way in which others treat them.’
(Snéha Khilay, founder of the Blue Tulip Training, specialising in cultural diversity.)
WHY DO WE ALL HAVE AN ACCENT?
Our accent is deeply rooted in our mother tongue, the way we picked up sounds around us as a child, and the way our articulators moulded these sounds throughout our lives. Our accent is a deep part of our culture and identity and should be embraced and valued as such. However, speaking English as a second language and remaining clear and confident in all situations can be a challenging task.
WHY SHOULD I SOFTEN MY ACCENT?
You may have an excellent understanding of English and yet feel frustrated at times when your colleagues or friends don’t understand your pronunciation.
You may feel that you’re not always confident in professional situations to express your ideas and become fully part of the conversation.
You may perceive that people make occasional judgements on your competence and communication due to your accent patterns, and that this might lead you to missing opportunities.
If any of the above applies to you, you may want to seek help in order to clarify your pronunciation and get more consistent and confident at communicating in English.
HOW WILL I SHIFT MY ACCENT?
Speaking is a physical activity. Changing your accent is like taking your articulators (jaw, tongue, lips and soft palate) to the gym and stretching them into new directions. It is exciting, at times challenging, but always extremely rewarding.
Practising is key: you will only get back what you put in!
HOW DOES IT WORK PRACTICALLY?
The training is based on proven strategies that I use daily with my clients to help them master the Received Pronunciation (the global standard in UK English Pronunciation). Each class is one hour long and is recorded so that you can assess the sounds you work on and measure your improvement over the sessions.
Physical and aural awareness of the features of your accent that need shifting to the targeted accent
Work on the physicality of your articulators, how they affect your speech patterns and how to retrain them to model English sounds
Review of all the vowel sounds of English RP
Review of all the consonants of English RP
Work on the rhythm and the intonation of English RP
Applying your new skills to text and conversation to gain full speech confidence
Exercises and homework provided to practice at home between the sessions
Available as individual coaching or group classes,
in person or on Zoom
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
I had the chance to work with Valerie on softening my accent last fall, during three one to one sessions. Valerie is highly skilled, very experienced and managed to make me realise my errors and correct them at the same time, using very professional techniques, with efficiency. This was definitely hard work, but the fun way. I will undoubtedly use Valerie's coaching again, should I need to speak publicly in a new setting, and wish I had met her years before. I definitely recommend her to any French native speaker willing to improve his English oral communication skills. I have been amazed by her ability to pick up my specialized radiological medical semantic field, far away from what must be her usual area of expertise. Thanks!
Training Specialist at IDeaS Revenue Solutions
Valerie has that incredible energy that makes working with her a pure enjoyment. As a voice and accent coach, Valerie was able to pinpoint my shortfalls and show me how to get closer to an intelligible English accent. She also expertly managed to improve my elocution and ensure a clear and striking speech delivery. I would strongly recommend Valerie for her expertise and amazing personality to anyone in need of professional help on accent softening.
Manager at Schlumberger
Valerie is an excellent professional in accent softening and public speaking domain. She demonstrates great passion to the subject and her clients and I enjoyed the sessions with her. Her opera background is a strong addition to the training she provides. She has a wonderful toolbox on how to own the ‘stage’, which is key to an excellent public speaker. Don’t miss out your chance to become excellent if you come across Valerie.
Really enjoyed working with Valerie. She is very professional and tailored each lesson to my needs. She was able to quickly identify key areas to focus on. We worked on both the accent and public speaking which I thoroughly enjoyed and which certainly made me a more confident speaker. My accent also improved significantly and became more homogeneous. I would certainly recommend Valerie to anyone looking to improve their speech.