Native speakers wanted!


What does “stay on track as far as the cuisine goes” mean, in this context?


Ralf, I can’t help but feel that you and I are reading different threads. :lol:

Don’t forget that Torsten specifically requested feedback. The team feedback has functioned quite well and has also been remarkably harmonious as far as I can see. If you look again, you’ll see that there is quite a lot of consensus about Brandee’s recording, along with some useful tips.

There has been agreement on all of the following points:

Alex initially commented that Brandee didn’t sound realistic. I thought it was valuable to also get some input from a non-native speaker of English. What I got from Alex’s comments is that Brandee would have been speaking much too slowly if her recording had been intended for a more advanced learner – which is what Alex clearly is. Otherwise, Alex seems to agree that Brandee is a good choice. (If I’m misinterpreting here, I encourage Alex to tell me I’m wrong.) :lol:

It seems to me that the main “naysayer” in this thread was Molly. However, Molly also argued in favor of natural speech and liveliness.

I think Brandee may have possibly misinterpreted some of the comments about other recordings as indirect criticisms of hers. She mentioned the word “boring” in her post. Alan said this about Stew’s recording:

My impression was that it was Alan’s intention to give Stew some positive feedback, and then also to make a general point. His general point is a useful tip for anybody who makes makes one of these recordings. If I’ve misinterpreted Alan’s words, I feel certain that he will tell me so.

Finally, you will notice that Brandee made a point of saying she is not an ESL teacher, that she doesn’t know who her audience is, and that input is appreciated. I think that’s good feedback from her. To simply tell someone “Here, record this text” and then provide no further information whatsoever would definitely not be the best approach to a project such as this.

In a nutshell, I don’t see any spoiled broth here at all, and I definitely don’t see 10 different recipes. On the contrary, I see that a lot of useful input, support and feedback has been provided, and those ingredients will help the broth to be as tasty and nourishing as possible.


Thank you all. I probably should not have posted last night as I was recovering from not feeling well and was overly sensitive. Not that I am not always sensitive to criticism, but while sick it seems to be very high!

Thank you Amy for putting it into bullet points,that helps. The ego sometimes takes over and all you see is the negative. Thank you Ralf for your input. I think by the different recordings you can hear me switch gears. Sometimes is it mine, others I am all over the place. I agree. Reading it over several times will help. The stories are quite witty and a great play on words. Sometimes I struggle with the flow if I do not understand it.

Back to a question of mine? Read it like a “story” with emotion? Or read it like text?

Thank you all for taking the time to give input and feedback. Much appreciated! :slight_smile:


Hi Brandee,

It is in the nature of this forum and no doubt any forum that once you commit yourself to making an appearance online, there are bound to be people offering advice. All I would do is congratulate you on having undertaken to read the texts in the first place and from my point of view it’s interesting to hear them read aloud. As for your style in reading them, I would only recommend that you be yourself and simply imagine you are reading them to a group of people sat in front of you. I think both Stew and Ralph have adopted the right style by giving the impression that they aren’t actually reading from a script but conversing with the ‘audience’ out there. Some years ago when I used to read my scripts translated from English into German for the BBC German service, I remember being told by an experienced producer: ‘We don’t want to ‘hear the paper’ in your reading. We want to imagine you are talking to the listeners.’ And he was dead right.

Good luck



I agree with him.


Thank you Alan. That helps quite a bit. However, I think I may have a ways to go on that, as that behavior is indicitive of a teacher. Presenting text is definitely the behavior of a teacher. This subject is foreign to me. The proper use of english would be the foreign subject. I am American afterall. :lol: I am learning quite a bit. :smiley: The last time I read or spoke of prepositions was a minimum of 20 years ago, without completely dating myself. :shock:

I am happy to keep reading, as I am actually enjoying it. I will keep reading and listening to input until someone says to stop! :smiley:

Fingers crossed for Hurricane Ike to not cause too much damage in South Florida.



Hi Alan! :smiley:
I am very excited…I thought on what you suggested and on the others input and tried a different approach. I got into the hand gestures and all to make it more authentic. When the behavior is authentic, hopefully it comes through in the sound! :smiley: I am not sure yet. I only sent them in last night, but I have a feeling these will be much better. Now instead of “reading” the text I am actually presenting the text, but with my own personality. Which…may be too much?!

I am sure everyone will let me know if it is. I just wanted to share that it is coming to me better and making more sense. It takes a bit for things to sink in with me.

I look forward to hearing your opinion on the latest essays! :smiley:

Thank you!


Hello everyone,

What do you make of Michelle Michelle Fiorito’s sample recording?

Many thanks,

TOEFL listening lectures: A lecture from a social studies class[YSaerTTEW443543]



In general very clear pronunciation.

She seems to have gone for a style in the example sentences that sounds instructive and a little forced as opposed to natural.

I guess it depends what you are looking for, doesn´t it?

Her accent comes through at points. Especially you can hear the difference from my and her recording on words like auxiliary. She has a clear accent to my ears and is quite easily comprehensible to me.

Here though it can be down to the exposure of the learner. Mainstream accents used in the media, as well as less regional versions are easier due to exposure.
However this can also be determined by the teacher, in that a student with for example a Scot as a teacher is more inclined to understand him as opposed to a guy from NY.

I guess it is also in the ball park of making streamlined recordings for levels, or challenging the learner. But it kind of, as all the debate does here, reminds me of one of my favourite websites;

I like this as it gives variety of exposure, and repeated texts for comparison.



What do you think of Michele Laboda’s recording? You can listen to Michele on this page.

Many thanks,

TOEIC listening, photographs: A picnic[YSaerTTEW443543]


Hi Torsten,

I’m interested in recording for audio cd’s, but I’m not sure what texts you are referring to, I’d like some more information please.

I’m not sure how to enable Javascript in order hear the sample recordings.




Dear Torsten,

I am interested in working for your company reading and recording your written texts. I have done a lot of reading to children and older adults and have been told that I read well and I have worked at a number of jobs which involved extensive telephone work and have been told that I have a pleasant phone voice and reading voice.

I am a native speaker of English, an American, currently residing in Austin, Tx, usa. I am a retired teacher and currently do freelance writing and research for an American company, writing articles for several of their newsletters and developing educational materials. I have posted on your forum a few times using the name I use on Internet forums and on my writing. You know me as Laura Bright. You commented on my introductory forum post in which I described some things about myself and my life, including the fact that I am totally blind. I have always enjoyed reding aloud and now, with the advances in computer technology that allow me to access information and to do recording via the computer, it seems that I may be able to make a bit of money doing something I love. It has always seemed a bit ironic that reading aloud has generally been a closed field for blind people, with the possible exception of reading to children or older people in nursing homes or people in hospitals who can not read. Additionally, there has been a relatively small amount of literature in Braille from which we can choose to read out loud. Now, however, I can access the printed text of your sample and submit my MP3 recording of it for your review and, hopefully, your approval.

Although your original post about reading seems to be dated in August, I did not come across it until today. If you are no longer seeking individuals to read, feel free to disregard this post. Otherwise, please let me know via private message. I will be happy to submit a recording. Please let me know to which address I may upload the file if you are still seeking readers.

Thank you for your consideration.



Hi Throsten

I think the first 4 dialogue samples are clear. The accent is not overbearing and they speak clearly - this should be the aim of dialogue. The samples 5 and 6 lean too strongly on American pronunciation, which should be labelled clearly for those who want to speak that way.


I really liked Tom Kane’s recording - His voice is brilliant!

I would like to contribute, but my accent probably isn’t neutral enough (Somerset).


Jimb0678, it has to be more neutral than American, surely. ( Geordielad ) LOL.


You might be right there. xD

I’ve recorded a sample and sent it to Torsten, who has kindly put it up in the usual place. Hopefully you’ll all be able to understand it.

EDIT: It would seem the recording under my name (James Gilbert) isn’t of my voice. Perhaps it’s just me…


Hi James,

Thanks a lot for pointing this out – now you can listen to your sample recording (number 17).


TOEIC listening, talks: Radio commercial for discounts on major appliances[YSaerTTEW443543]


Hi, I am an ESL teacher and I was listening to a recording made by Brandee - the one with the story of Andrew, the man who never went anywhere without his coat. I noticed that in her recording she made a few errors in reading the words, and I feel it is really important that English learners hear words read correctly: She read the word ‘anecdote’ as ‘antidote’, pronounced the River Thames using the ‘th’ as in ‘the’ and the ‘a’ as in ‘tame’ and read the word ‘palpable’ as ‘palapable’ - (a new word in English, perhaps?) I don’t mean to be overly critical and if it were just a question of accent I wouldn’t have said anything, but these are actual errors in reading and lower the standard of what you offer. I hope this is found to be constructive.



I would like to know if you are still looking for Native speakers of the English language?


Yes we are.[YSaerTTEW443543]

TOEIC listening, photographs: Restaurant on the lake[YSaerTTEW443543]