VOICE TALENT LIBRARY
Language & Accent
That's understandable, we know there are many questions to answer.
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"Chinese Voice Over" is a bit of a misleading term. Chinese is considered a family of languages rather than a single language. While all forms of Chinese use the same written characters, or Hanzi, each spoken languages is distinct from the others. About one fifth of the world's population speaks some variety of Chinese as their native language. Most often when you see someone offering "Chinese Voice Over" what they are probably offering is Mandarin voice over.Common Chinese languages:
Mandarin is the most widely spoken as it is the official language of the People's Republic of China as well as the Republic of China (aka Taiwan). Mandarin is considered the simplest spoken Chinese language as it only uses four tones. Several other varieties of Chinese, including Yue (including Cantonese) and Wu, use many more distinct tones for each syllable. Almost every speaker of any Chinese language knows Mandarin at least as their second language.
Cantonese is a member of the Yue branch of Chinese, and is most popular in the southeastern parts of China, including Hong Kong. It involves more tones than Mandarin. Because it involves fewer tones, it can often communicate more words in fewer syllables, making recorded Cantonese slightly shorter than Mandarin.
Wu includes the dialect of Shanghainese, not surprisingly most common in Shanghai. It also employs more tones than Mandarin, with a similar shortening effect, and is considered a slightly "harsher" sounding language. Some native speakers like to say it is a good language to get angry. Among other reasons, it has a wide and imaginative variety of insults you can utilize.
Just like with any language, when you are working with Chinese, especially Mandarin voice over, you need to consider a lot of things very carefully. What is your goal by translating to or from this language? Who is your specific audience within the group of people who speak this language? Do you know how to adapt your script to speak to this group?
Edge Studio is a full service audio production facility, and that’s not restricted to English. If you need Mandarin voice over (or another Chinese language), we have you covered from the initial translation and adaptation to casting talent and language monitors to help lay down those final recording sessions.
If you need Mandarin voice over, (or any other Chinese voice over), translation, dubbing, adaptation, recording, or language monitor for cartoon, education videos, powerpoint, ESL, audiobooks, or commercials, call edge studio (212-868-3343).
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