The way we sound tells the story of who we are


“The way we sound tells the story of who we are.”

An increasing fascination with the simple truth led Jo into the delights of dialect and dialogue coaching.  Having decided she wanted to know more, Jo took a deep breath and took a year out to complete a Post Graduate qualification in Voice & Dialect Studies at Central School of Speech & Drama in London.

As Jo’s instinctive, but incomplete knowledge, was re-enforced by the science, she embarked on this fascinating journey.  She always approaches this vocal quest with the character as the starting point: the vocal characteristics, the music, pronunciation, vocal placement, the physicality, all help to discover, release and illuminate character.

We discover who this person is, as we explore their vocality.  Dialect and accent are not qualities to be bolted on, as it were, but to be realised organically in preparation and rehearsal.  And ideally this will all happen in close discussion with the director and the actor in pre-production.  Of course, in practice, we often don’t have that luxury of time, budgets and schedules being as they are, and we are snatching hours here and there after filming has begun.  Actors are extremely pragmatic and adaptable, so both extremes in modus operandi and all shades in between, can be successful.

As to that modus operandi, Jo’s only real rule is that there is no rule!  Actors and directors are as varied and different as anyone else, and adaptability, flexibility and a sense of humour are paramount.

In addition, Jo loves to travel, so she is very happy to grab that pre-packed case and jump on that plane to… well… she has worked in the States, India, Africa, the Arctic Circle, Portugal, France, Germany, Romania, Estonia, Hungary, The Czech Republic, Holland, Catalonia, and Cromarty!  Combining the passions of vocal discovery and foreign climes is a dream come true… Where next?

Jo teaches Voice and Dialect at RADA, Rose Bruford College, Central and Italia Conti and was appointed Guest Lecturer at the University of Southern Florida.


In practical terms Jo can offer:

On Set Coaching

On set coaching and advice, with noting for editors.

Accent Reduction

Accent reduction for actors and professionals who do not have English as a first language.

Pre-Production Coaching

Pre-production programmed coaching.

Voice and Dialect Design Working from Script

Voice and Dialect Design Working from script, Rapid research and choices made for an overall vocal design, e.g. archaic Gaelic to be used for the Picts and Roman 9th Legion, Somali language, Somali accented English, and Somali accented American English.

Audition Coaching for Actors

Audition coaching for actors, both for face to face meetings and self-record auditions.

Dialogue Advice

Dialogue advice/doctoring, Jo is also a BAFTA nominated writer, and can offer valuable dialogue choices.


ADR coaching and rough cut advice.


Presentation Skills, Vocal Technique and Confidence Building for the Corporate sector.

I can’t recommend Jo highly enough. She got me to speak with a Portuguese accent!  No easy task.
Sir Tom Courtenay


Thank you, thank you, I quite simply couldn’t have done it without you.
Emily Mortimer


Recent Credits


The Postcard Killings
What About Love
Christmas at the Palace
The Princess Switch
Wonder Woman
The Journey
Whisky Galore
The Huntsman
The Infiltrator

Black Sea
Sunset Song
For Those in Peril
Sunshine on Leith
What About Love

Mary, Queen of Scots
Night Train to Lisbon
Great Expectations

Television & Radio

Elizabeth is Missing
The  Spanish Princess
Peaky Blinders
Ordeal by Innocence
Black Earth Rising
Alias Grace
Marco Polo
Crossing Lines
Walking and Talking
The Borgias
Great Expectations
Ben Hur
Einstein and Eddington
Phoo Action
Liverpool Nativity
Diana: The Final Journey
Losing Gemma
Low Winter Sun

Jo has a skill and a talent for knowing the best note to give, she has the actor’s complete trust,
she works intuitively and creatively, and always without ego.

Sherry Horman

Film director

Jo has been the dialect coach on several productions of mine and I’ve always been impressed that the actors, (and in one case the singers), involved really appreciated her work with them.  So often actors can regard the voice coach as a sort of schoolteacher and that is not Jo’s style at all. I also worked with Jo as an actor on four different very specific dialects, Italian, French, German and Irish. In each case I was impressed by Jo’s detailed approach to how that particular character would speak. She really understands the text and you don’t get just stock ‘rent-an-accent’.  I’ve also worked with Jo as an actress.. and she’s pretty good at that too!

Giles Havergal

Theatre director, Actor, Opera stage director