Thursday, December 20, 2007

BBC Ballet Shoes: I Can Do RP. Maybe I Should Become A British Child Actor!

In response to Niranjana's comment about the RP in the Ballet Shoes trailer, I thought I would share this article from the Times on how difficult it was to find young actors for Ballet Shoes who spoke RP.

(RP is "received pronunciation," or "an English accent the way Julie Andrews does it." It was, for many years, the required accent at Oxbridge, as well as the BBC. Yes, you read that correctly. If you were on the faculty at Oxbridge, you had to use RP. The accent was taught in schools.)

So the Times wrote an article about how sad it was that most young British actors only spoke Estuary English, or "an English accent the way the characters in Love Actually do it."

And -- sniff, sniff -- that means they weren't able to cast young unknowns in Ballet Shoes, but had to resort to -- sob, sob -- very famous movie stars.

Here's my question. Every American actor in every acting program in the country learns RP. Even I can do a fairly decent RP. Why aren't the British actors learning it?

(The Times article also includes the casting call for two of the three Fossils, if you're interested in reading. I always think casting calls are interesting, because they're rather like job descriptions -- vague and intimidating at the same time.)

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