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.
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 for actors and professionals who do not have English as a first language.
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/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.
The Postcard Killings
What About Love
Christmas at the Palace
The Princess Switch
For Those in Peril
Sunshine on Leith
What About Love
Mary, Queen of Scots
Night Train to Lisbon
Television & Radio
Elizabeth is Missing
The Spanish Princess
Ordeal by Innocence
Black Earth Rising
Walking and Talking
Einstein and Eddington
Diana: The Final Journey
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.
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!