Accent on Accents: Say “Nuclear Wessels” and I Will not likely Sh…


All right, this is a personal trauma, but I will in no way get in excess of Walter Koenig as Chekhov on Star Trek saying “nuclear wessels.” Would it have killed anyone to at least introduce the guy to a serious Russian speaker? I know it was the Cold War, but sheesh! W is not a letter in the Russian (Cyrillic) alphabet. The sound does not occur the natural way in Russian. When Russians have to symbolize a W sound, they possibly adjust it to a V (B in Cyrillic) or they use Y which appears like “oo” as in “pool.” Visualize spelling “wall” as “oo-all.” Wales is “OO-ales” and Washington is “Vashington.” A Russian, of whatsoever century, is heading to look at the phrase “vessel” and pronounce it vessel. Sigh.

It can be appalling in the period of YouTube that anyone attempts a Russian accent with no listening to some Russians talking English. Heck, just decide up the DVD of White Evenings, which features Mikhail Baryshnikov (genuine accent) and Helen Mirren. Though Helen is a high-quality English girl, she was born Ilyena Vasilievna Mironoff and her accent is honestly come by. I uncover that if I test IMDB, any person whose Russian accent I won’t be able to fault right after 5 minutes is possibly Russian or Jap European, or has an instant loved ones member who is. A possible exception is the amazing Timothy V. Murphy. I loveloveLOVE the Russian mobster DirecTV ads, and I was entirely blown absent when I observed out he was Irish. I have not been able to uncover if he has any Japanese European kinfolk (he lists Serbian as properly as Russian and many others as acquainted dialects on his resume), but if he doesn’t, I’m even more amazed. Oddly, there are some seems in Gaelic that are helpfully very similar to appears in Russian, but God bless the male, he did his research. And I soooo want a pygmy giraffe.

Pitfalls waiting to expose your Russian accent as phony involve…the letter H: Like W, it would not exist in Russian. Their letter is X, pronounced like the in Bach. A breathy H sound with no slight phlegmy edge will give you away. Also the letter R: Russian Rs are rolled, more greatly the later on English was acquired. In truth, the tongue is really significantly ahead in the mouth for most consonants the letter D is typically pronounced with a slight “th” high quality. Small I: My Russian trainer often explained most Russians can’t explain to the word “are living” from the phrase “depart”. Eef I listen to “if”, I know eet ees phony accent. Small A, as in “cat”: this audio is scarce for everyone but English speakers. A Russian expressing “cat” sounds like a extremely brief “crucial-ett.” Posts: They will not truly exist in Russian. If you usually are not minimal to a script, expressing “I have apple” is substantially much more likely than “I have AN apple” or “I have THE apple.” “Russia” is spelled with an O in Russian, so a Russian pronounces the initial syllable as in “rock” somewhat than “ruck.”

I admit I am not Russian. I studied Russian when I was a volunteer for American Ballet Theatre if I at any time obtained the likelihood to say “your put or mine” to Baryshnikov, I needed to do it in Russian (of course, I had the chance, and no, I chickened out). But I fell in like with the tunes of the language, and I really don’t like to hear individuals butchering it. So recall that Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Chekhov (the actual just one) are spinning in their graves every time Star Trek airs, and be mindful with the Mom Russian tongue.

Lisa Theriot


Resource by Lisa Theriot