Voice coach Catherine Weate prepares actors for German accent roles
16 October 2015
Actors involved in the upcoming productions of Cabaret and Peer Gynt had the chance to take part in a workshop run by voice and dialect coach Catherine Weate.
Catherine has coached actors in West End productions such as Dirty Dancing and The King’s Speech, and her numerous television coaching credits include Downton Abbey and Siblings. Her previous roles include Head of Voice at Rose Bruford College and Head of Examinations at LAMDA.
Catherine taught the group useful techniques for speaking English in a German accent, a skill that some characters are required to do in both Cabaret and Peer Gynt. She explained how every accent has a ‘shape’, and also demonstrated how to truly hear your own voice by cupping your hands behind your ears.
One student said, “It was really interesting to see how thoroughly a professional explores the intricacies of the accent. The way that she built it up step by step made the whole thing seem so much more achievable! Also, the resources she gave us meant that we could go away and keep reinforcing what we had learnt, which was absolutely brilliant.”
“This was a fantastic opportunity for our young actors to learn about the science and precision of speaking with a different dialect from an expert in the field,” said Director of Drama, Gilly Norell. “This is a prime example of how we invest in our students, equipping them with skills that will far outlast their time at school.”