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Mastering an American Accent - The Compact Guide

Mastering an American Accent

The Compact Guide

By Rebecca Gausnell
Series: The Compact Guides
Imprint: Nick Hern Books
Paperback : 9781848429789, 184 pages, February 2022


This step-by-step guide to learning and practising an American accent is for anyone who wants to use a General American accent with confidence in auditions and performance.

Inside, you'll find an easy-to-follow breakdown of the fundamentals required for the accent – including the shape and position of the mouth; vowels and consonants; rhythm; stressing; pitch; pace and more – as well as structured drills and exercises to build on and consolidate what you've learned, using extracts from contemporary American plays.

The book is supplemented by dozens of online audio clips of General American voices, recorded by native speakers, so you can listen to the target sounds and repeat for practice (you'll find examples of these lower down this page). Also included are tips on fully integrating the accent into your performance, as well as a series of vocal warm-ups.

The Compact Guides are pocket-sized introductions for actors and theatremakers, each tackling a key topic in a clear and comprehensive way. Written by industry professionals with extensive hands-on experience of their subject, they provide you with maximum information in minimum time.


"A useful reference book… students and teachers will find the passages from a range of plays, many of them contemporary, very helpful… the dimension that really makes this book work is the voice files that accompany each of the sections, allowing the actor to practise in real time and making for a much more interactive experience."

- Drama & Theatre Magazine

"Detailed and specific... the exercises are clearly described and valuable, and the voice recordings that accompany the book are very useful for illustrating what is being described in words... a worthwhile investment for someone seeking to expand their voice and accent skills or about to go into rehearsal."

- British Theatre Guide