North American English Voiceover
As a voice actor living in North America, I have voiced hundreds of projects for many international clients, including North American English voiceover. Although I live in Canada, does this mean I speak solely with a Canadian accent? I was born and raised in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, which is considered the center from a geographical perspective. Many accents across different regions help shape this area, and my suburb is predominately Canadian residents who speak with a neutral North American accent.
Canadians Include Vast Diversity
The GTA, or the Greater Toronto Area, where I grew up, is Canada’s most populated geographical region, with six million residents as of 2016. Most residents are born and raised Canadians, and the most common ethnic groups are Italians, Cantonese, Punjabi, Chinese, Tagalog, and Spanish.
The Evolution of the American Accent
Linguist George Philip Krapp coined the Neutral North American or general American accent in 1925 to describe the pronunciation he thought was becoming the norm in the United States. Well before the 20th century, America saw many newcomers from Europe who brought with them Irish accents, Scottish, English accents, and even Scandinavian. We must also consider the African influence for hundreds of years which influenced what we hear today.
Throughout time this melting pot of dialects became the “neutral North American accent, and it does not originate from any specific region. Ultimately, there is no real “neutral accent” as they are divided by country and territory. However, within some of these accents, some sub-accents are considered neutral.
Where Can You Hear a North American English Accent?
My accent, or the general Canadian accent, is a Neutral North American accent. My accent is what you hear on Canadian news outlets, American news outlets like CNN or NBC, and most television shows and movies. When it comes to voiceover, my accent is considered broad and not defined by a particular region.
Technically I have a Canadian accent, and most of my work is with US companies. They like that I speak English and have a neutral North American accent that benefits the overall message without appearing recognizable.
Working as a North American English Voiceover Talent
Most of my work is in a neutral North American accent, and occasionally I will perform with an accent. My ability to perform accents comes from growing up in an ethnically diverse area. The GTA is a beautiful place to live, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. As part of a diverse and inclusive community, I thrive professionally and personally.
If you need a neutral North American English voiceover, Canadian or diverse accents, contact me today!