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5 tips to improve your intonation in French

French pronunciation: My 5 musical tips to bring your french voice to life

Want to improve your French accent and intonation? Discover my 5 singing-inspired tips to add motion and emotion to your spoken French.

1. The Siren

𝗘𝘅𝗽𝗲𝗿𝗶𝗺𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝘃𝗼𝗶𝗰𝗲.
If your voice is monotone and lacks expressivity, you’ll want to explore and feel what it’s capable of doing.

✅ Gently humm wailing siren sounds
✅ Go from your low voice to your middle voice
✅ Then from your middle to your high voice
✅ And siren back down.

❌ Don’t force your voice.
❌ Don’t pressure yourself to sing Nessun Dorma
❌ Don’t sing Mozart’s Queen of the Night… just yet!

2. Sing-to-Text

This exercise is very efficient to train your ear. It is similar to what is taught in music schools.

✅ Select an audio/video source
✅ Slow it down if necessary
✅ Hum the melody
✅ WITHOUT the words

-> You’ll become more aware of the melody of French
-> You’ll train your ear to the subtle pitch variations


3. The script

Practice intentionally with a script.

✅ Choose your audio/video source
✅ Make sure there’s a script
✅ Print your script
✅ Mark the intonations with arrows
✅ Focus EXCLUSIVELY on the intonation

->  You’ll train your ear to the subtle pitch variations

->  You’ll identify patterns thanks to the visual cues

You can also underline louder words and strike out silent “e” in the middle of words and at the end of words to help you with the rhythm and flow. 

4. Chef d'orchestre

Speak with your hands and pretend you’re a music conductor. 

✅ Follow the rising/falling intonation with your hand
✅ Repeat the sentences with your hands
✅ Watch your hands as you speak

-> You’ll FEEL the intonation
-> You’ll SEE the intonation
-> Your’ll HEAR it too 😉!

5. Actor's Studio

Use your voice to express emotions. 

𝗣𝗿𝗼𝗻𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗰𝗲 𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝘀𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵 𝗱𝗶𝗳𝗳𝗲𝗿𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝗶𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀.
Anger – Love – Authority – Impatience – Sadness…

Laissez s’exprimer l’actrice ou l’acteur français qui sommeille en vous !

Pay attention to what your voice does.
– Steep rise / fall?

– Gentle rise / fall?

– Even tone?

What else?

Let's recap!

This routine engages all your senses to make your practice effective! 

  • The Siren helps you become aware of your voice in French.
  • Sing-to-Text enhances your ear training.
  • The Script will provide a visual image for the sounds you hear.
  • The Conductor will help your body integrate sounds and intonations through proprioception.
  • Actor’s Studio will bring you closer to your French-speaking personality.

    If you try any of those, let me know how it goes! 

If you prefer my carrousels, here's the French version

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