Looking for a RP reader in London

Albert_uk

New member
Joined
Dec 10, 2021
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Italian
Home Country
Great Britain
Current Location
Great Britain
I am acting in an amateur play and my character requires RP accent and pronunciation. Since I am not a native speaker I would like to record someone else with a RP accent so that I can listen to my lines read by this person while I commute. My lines are in total max 20 minutes so the recording will not be very long. Ideally somewhere in Central London. Anyone with an RP accent interested?
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
You're unlikely to find someone who naturally speaks with RP in this day and age. You probably need a voice coach or a professional actor.

You've failed to mention how much you're offering to pay this person to record twenty minutes of dialogue. Also, it's not clear why the person needs to be in central London. You'll have access to many more people if you email them the script and then they email back their recording.
 

Albert_uk

New member
Joined
Dec 10, 2021
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Italian
Home Country
Great Britain
Current Location
Great Britain
The idea was to record the cue lines of the dialogue too, so for example I will read the other person part very quickly just for the cue and the person with the RP accent to record my lines. That's why I was suggesting Central London, mainly because it could be done in a quiet part of Sturbucks or similar.
As this is an amateur production I cannot offer too much I am afraid but I would say £30 plus paying for the coffee.

Thanks
Alberto
 

jutfrank

VIP Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
You're unlikely to find someone who naturally speaks with RP in this day and age.

RP is the standard pronunciation that you might call 'BBC English'. It's the English that I speak in class and which you too probably use professionally.
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
I don't consider RP to be standard everyday English anymore. I speak the same English in class that I speak out of class, but then I'm a teacher of conversational English. I assumed from post 1, that we were talking about RP (I agree that's BBC English) from a decade in which people actually referred to a very particular type of English as RP. When I hear "RP", I think BBC announcers of the 1930s and 1940s.

Alberto, can you clarify? Is the production you're in set in the modern day or in the past? If it's in the past, in what year?
 

jutfrank

VIP Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
I see. Yes, teachers still generally use the term 'RP' to describe that kind of English that is considered to be unmarked for region or class (I guess that's what Alberto is talking about). This is very different of course from what was described as RP decades ago.
 

probus

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Member Type
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
As a Canuck I'm curious about this. Would it be fair to say that years ago RP was U, but that it no longer is? If so, what has changed? The way people speak? Or social attirudes about accents? Are the terms U and non-U still understood?
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
As a Canuck I'm curious about this. Would it be fair to say that years ago RP was U, but that it no longer is? If so, what has changed? The way people speak? Or social attirudes about accents? Are the terms U and non-U still understood?
Yes- the RP English has moved on from Lady Bracknell.
 

jutfrank

VIP Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
Would it be fair to say that years ago RP was U, but that it no longer is?

Yes.

If so, what has changed? The way people speak? Or social attirudes about accents?

Good question. I think a bit of both but mostly the latter. I recall someone here on the forum once posted something illustrating how the Queen's pronunciation has changed quite remarkably over the years. I don't know if she was coached or whether it happened naturally. In any case, I think that this change in speech has gone hand in hand with changing social attitudes about class and society, and what constitutes 'prestige' in today's Britain.

A distinction that is often made nowadays uses the terms traditional RP (how the upper classes spoke back in the 1950s) and modern RP (the kind of geographically and socially 'neutral' way of speaking that many Brits use today). The latter is what we in the ESL industry think of as 'standard' pronunciation, and which I think most people understand as RP today.
Are the terms U and non-U still understood?

I don't believe they're used any more in linguistics, no.
 
Last edited:

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
Are the terms U and non-U still understood?
I accidentally included this in my post, where I was trying to show how RP has changed. The vast majority of native speakers will not have heard of the terms, much less the controversies of whether you should say lavatory/toilet or tomato sauce/ketchup. These debates are mostly non-starters, outside a very small circle of hold-outs. I'd say the terms are confined to people who discuss these things- I come across them in discussions from time to time, but not, as Jutfrank says, many linguistic texts that are not looking at history.
 
Last edited:
Top