African Dialect

I always find it fun and easy to pick up other people’s dialects or cadences you’d think with an ear for that another language would be easy to learn. Nope. I’m horrible at learning new words…that are foreign sounds to me. I’m a bit embarrassed as a voiceover artist not being able to pick up on simple conversational pleasantries when in another country!

I’m in Kenya now. I started learning Samburu because I’m volunteering for a month working with a nonprofit that helps educate children in the Samburu tribe. These kids put me to shame. In Grade 3 they’re already fluent in Samburu, Swahili and English!

It’s super fun to learn new words. And saying them is SOO fun. But ten minutes later after 20 different thoughts to distract me I’m already asking, “How do you say ____ again?” As soon as they say it I’m like “OH YEAH!” But for the life of me, when I need that word I can’t think of it!

Is language that hard for us to learn (as our first language) as a child?

Are there any tips you fellow VO artists can share that makes learning new words stick? I really feel like I should be able to learn a new language FASTER rather than NOT AT ALL with my ear and love for words!


If you’re interested in my (Purely English) blog about my volunteer work in Kenya please visit and follow me here:

One thought on “African Dialect

  1. I would not think that voice over artists necessarily have an advantage to learning new words or languages. Being able to speak well and with emotion does not seem related to learning. BUT stay in Kenya for a year and I m sure you will master the language.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s