This resource was created as a product of a research project Best Practice in Accent Training for Indigenous Actors, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Insight Development Grant. Developed by principle investigator Eric Armstrong (York University) and co-investigator Shannon Vickers (University of Winnipeg), the project aimed to serve the Indigenous performing arts community to identify its experiences, needs and wants with regards to accent training and performance, and suitable resources to facilitate that training. To that end, the investigators ran a series of focus groups with Indigenous artists* in Winnipeg, Toronto and online in order to identify what the community felt was important. Transcripts of these focus groups are available on this site, and, once published, an overview of the conclusions of the study, summarizing the comments of the focus group participants will also be made available. As part of the Indigenous ethics process done for this research project, the investigators committed to “return” the outcomes of the research to the community to whom it rightly belongs; Native Earth Performing Arts, in partnering with the researchers, will safeguard the resources gathered here.
Armstrong and Vickers collaborated with Indigenous student-scholars, and professional artists and researchers, including Elan Marchinko, Brefny Caribou-Curtin, Neshina Loft, Katie German, and Cameron Adams, in their analysis the focus group material, and in the gathering of the Indigenous Accent Resources made available here.
As a “best practices” project, the materials gathered to create the accent resource were not meant to be exhaustive, but to form a representative example of what such a resource might look like. Accent learning materials available here are meant to teach Indigenous actors how to approach an accent. Armstrong and Vickers are presenting on their findings from the process of creating the resource at the 2019 Voice and Speech Trainers Association conference in Orlando FL. Resources from this presentation are available on the projects’ website.
* Indigenous Artists who participated in the Focus Groups who chose not to be anonymous were: Winnipeg: Darla Contois, Marsha Knight, Sera-Lys McArthur, Joshua Ranville, Ian Ross; Toronto: Hunter Cardinal, Brefny Caribou, Flint Eagle, Meegwun Fairbrother; Electronic Focus Group 1: Rachelle White Wind, Waawaate Fobister, Nyla Carpentier, Julian Black Antelope, Samantha Brown; Electronic Focus Group 2: Deneh’Cho Thompson, Gloria Eshkibok, and Michael Greyeyes. There were 8 participants who chose to be anonymous.
As per request of the focus group participants, the resources are password protected. These resources are intended to be used by Indigenous performers/storytellers, as well as accent/voice/dialect coaches who work with Indigenous performers or students.
• Accent Samples
• Orthographic Transcripts of Samples
• Biographical Data Pages
• Focus Group Transcripts