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nah – TAH – shah mar – CHEF – kah (CHEF with “ch” , not “sh”)

The topic of “Pronunciations” is always timely in my business, as it is a daily function of my job as a voice-over talent. Whether reading a script or simply needing the correct pronunciation of a name, it’s always best to get it right the first time by looking it up or asking for the correct pronunciation. Forvo.com, Dictionary.com, AND Youtube.com (type in a name – it is sure to be pronounced somewhere on video) are great places to start. However, many proper names and local pronunciations will need a helping hand.

In any scenario, here are some tips for helping others pronounce words correctly:

  • Leave a voicemail with the correct pronunciation.  Leaving a voicemail allows the listener to play it back repeatedly. I’ve been known to ask clients to leave a message for me if they are unable to do the following:
  • Record an audio file and email the file.
  • Or, my favorite for time sake – type out the pronunciation phonetically, capitalizing the emphasized syllables. This one seems tricky to some people, but it’s really not hard. Simply break down the word(s) into syllables and sounds as you hear them. For example, “Natasha Marchewka” is pronounced as above.

I capitalized the syllables that need emphasis, wrote out the phonetics, or sounds, as you might commonly hear them, while also adding a note in parenthesis.

Easy? Challenging? I’d like to know what you think…



2 responses to “How to say it right the first time”

  1. Another great post, Natasha. I think some people aren’t familiar with phonetics and get intimidated by the word itself, let alone how to write it out. Your example is excellent and I’d enjoy more examples in future posts. Thanks.

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