FAQ

 

Curious about how DialectCoaches.com works? We might have the answer for you below! Just click on any of the questions below, and the answer will appear below it.

If you have any questions that aren't covered on this page, feel free to contact us.

GENERAL FAQ:

What exactly do you do, and how much does it cost?

What we do is simple: We receive requests from talent, directors and producers (as well as casting directors, talent representation etc.) who are looking for a dialect coach they can trust. We discuss the project in detail and then scour our database of coaches, working hard to match all the needs of the client, no matter how specific. Then we'll contact the client, contact the coach, and make the introduction. And yes, our referral services are free!

 

FAQ FOR TALENT:

How do I ask you to locate a dialect coach for me?

If you are pressed for time, feel free to phone us directly at 323-251-1944 and we'll discuss your specific goals and needs and help you find a dialect coach who is right for you. If your inquiry is less urgent or you want to arrange a call for later, please visit our contact page, fill in the information, and be specific about your needs. (Which dialect you want to learn? Is this for a specific project or for overall career development? When does this accent need to be performance ready? Are you looking for a Key Coach?)

I need a dialect coach. When you find one for me, will you charge me for the referral?

Absolutely not! Our referral services are 100% free.

Once you find a great coach for me, do I pay you for their services, or do I pay the coach?

You pay the coach. Our job is to make the introduction. The rest is up to you.

I'm a well-known actor, and I'd really like to keep my process private. Can you find a dialect coach for me who can keep it under wraps that I'm working with them?

Of course! We are VERY sensitive to your privacy needs. We will find a professional dialect coach who is accustomed to working with the needs of high-profile talent and should you request it will even be willing to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) so that they can work with you discreetly.

I am a bi-lingual actor, and I do projects in both languages. Can you help me find a bi-lingual dialect coach?

Yes! We can! As multi-lingual dialect coaches can be in high demand, we recommend that you be pro-active and establish a working relationship with a dialect coach before any last minute projects pop up.

What's a Key Dialect Coach?

On set, a key dialect coach is the dialect coach who is in charge of coaching most of the talent in a project, and often for co-ordinating and overseeing the work of other dialect coaches. To an actor, a key dialect coach (or Key Coach) is a regular member of their training team. The value of having a key dialect coach is that unlike coaches an actor may work with on a single project or for triage (emergency!) work for a last minute audition, a Key Dialect Coach becomes very familiar your learning style and skillset. They know your work well enough to coach you without ever stepping on your acting process, and because of your continued work together, they are able to help you respond quickly to last minute accent audition opportunities --- even for accents that are new to you. 

 

 

What's a Dialect Fitting? 

Dialect fitting is a useful tool for working actors who know that they can benefit from adding accents to their resume, but want to make sure they are learning the ones that will be the most marketable for them.  In the simplest terms, dialect fitting is the process of selecting accents which will complement an actor's overall branding package, and are in line with current accent trends in film and television. A dialect fitting is typically done in two stages: First, the actor provides the dialect fitting specialist with their resume(s), headshots (present and past), website, and links to reviews where they are mentioned. Using these research materials and asking a set of key questions, the dialect fitting specialist will guide the actor toward the accents which have the potential to suit the widest variety of characters in an actor's wheelhouse. A dialect fitting typically costs as much as a private accent lesson would, and can save the actor time and frustration. DialectCoaches.com can link you with a qualified coach highly experienced in dialect fitting. To make an appointment, please write to info@dialectcoaches.com

What does it mean to 'Master an Accent'?

An accent which has been mastered is one that an actor can think and speak in spontaneously and naturally while maintaining consistent accuracy of that accent. It's when the accent been learned and integrated into the actor's cognitive processes in such a way that it feels like second nature. 

What is learning an accent vs. mastering an accent?

There are several ways to answer this question, but the simplest is to say that learning an accent is a step on the way to mastering an accent. 

What are the steps to mastering an accent?

While there are many techniques approaches to learning a target accent, no matter the approach taken, the following steps tend to occur. 

a) One must take steps to accurately hear the individual sounds / components of the target accent (Accent Recognition)

b) One must take steps to be able to mechanically (physically) reproduce those sounds individually (Articulator Flexibility)

c) One must master combining those sounds in various groupings (syllables, words, phrases) (Articulator Agility / Fluidity) 

d) One must become able to recite planned text while remaining consistently within the target accent (Accent Acquisition / Learning an Accent)

e) One must be able to express their own thoughts spontaneously while remaining in accent (Image Integration)

f) (For actors only) One must be able to maintain accent accuracy and consistency while fully acting in performance (Accent Integration)

What's a Target Accent? 

A target accent (also referred to as a target dialect) refers to the accent an actor (or anyone!) is taking steps to learn and integrate into their performance (or daily life).  

What does Accent Integration mean?

Accent integration (also known as image integration) is a term now in wide use among professional dialect coaches and refers to mastering a target accent to such a level that the actor is able to turn his or her complete attention to their acting performance (to be in the moment) without inconsistencies in the accent appearing. This is a vital step in the accent acquisition process for actors, whether it is addressed formally or not. Without the completion of this step, it is highly likely that the actor's accent will become inconsistent when their character undergoes some type of high-stakes moment (such as a highly emotional moment, or adreneline charged moment). 

When should I start learning a target accent?

While the answer to this will vary a bit depending on your own skill set and the project at hand, the best rule of thumb is  to learn the accent as soon as possible. Accent acquisition is definitely a pre-production sport. The ideal process for integrating an accent other than your own into a performance is to completely master the accent before you get very far into your rehearsal process. Ideally you want to make sure that your brain has already 're-wired' itself to accept the new accent as a real option for communication before speaking as your character. 

 

 

 

 

FAQ FOR PRODUCERS:

How do I ask you to find a dialect coach for me?

For fastest service, phone us at 323-251-1944. You may also visit our contact page, fill in the information, and be specific about your needs. What dialect(s) and/or languages your actor(s) need to learn, when they need to be performance ready, where you need the coach to be (on set, in an office, on Skype etc.), how much you have budgeted for them, and anything else you think we may need to know. 

I need to hire a dialect coach for my production. When you find the right one, will you charge me for the referral?

Nope! Our referral services are totally free.

Once you locate a coach that's suitable for my production, do I pay you for their services, or do I pay the coach?

Typically, you pay the coach directly as our vetted coaches are independent contractors. 

We're shooting in a very remote location. Can you find a coach who's willing to work with my cast on set?

As part of our screening process, we ask ALL coaches about their willingness and availability to work remotely. Many coaches in our network are quite happy to work on set, on location, even in remote areas.

FAQ FOR COACHES:

I want to join the DialectCoaches.com coach network, so you can start referring talent and producers to me too. How do I do that?

It's a straightforward  three step process:

  1. Sign up for free membership to DialectCoaches.com. When you create your user profile, make sure you select "Coach" as your category.
  2. Once you verify your membership, go to the For Coaches page and click on the button that says "Become One of Our Coaches". This will take you to a very thorough application form that you fill out online. (Like you, we are detail oriented!)
  3. After you submit your completed coach application form, Pamela Vanderway, founder of DialectCoaches.com, will phone you personally to complete the interview and add you to the network. That's it!

I signed up as a site member, but I don't see the "Become One of Our Coaches" button on the For Coaches page. Help!

This button is only visible to those members who have identified themselves as coaches when they signed up. The button also disappears after the coach application has been submitted. If you're a coach, and you haven't already filled out the form, you may have forgotten to select "Coach" as your category when you originally signed up. If you're not sure, go to your account and see if it's listed in your main profile info. If it's not, contact us and we'll fix it.

I took a look at the coach application. Wow, that's a lot of questions! Why do you need so much info from me?

Talent and production can have very, very specific needs when it comes to dialect coaches -- And you have specific career goals as well! We gather a large amount of professional information about you so that we can match you with the right clients. The more we know about what you do, who you want to work with, and so on, the more satisfied you will be with the clients we introduce to you.

If you add me to your coach network, does that mean I work for you?

Absolutely not. You remain completely independent - both professionally and financially. All we do is make the introduction so that you can improve your client roster.

If I join your coach network, will you post my name on your site?

We are very discreet with all the people we do business with. When we get a request from a client, and find that you are a match for their specific needs, we will contact you privately to see about your ability and interest. Then we'll introduce you to your new client, and you take it from there. If you'd like to be visible directly on our site, please contact us about providing video content for our clients! 

If you refer an actor or a producer to me, and I take them on as a client, will you charge me for the referral?

No again! Our referral services are completely free. 

If you hook me up with a new client, will the client pay me directly, or via DialectCoaches.com?

The client will pay you directly. 

I joined your coach network, but you haven't referred anyone to me yet. Do you hate me?

Of course not! Remember, our job is to find the right coach for each client or project, and the right client / project for our coaches as well. We're all about quality, not quantity. When we discover the perfect client for you, we will let you know right away.