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Originally Posted by Mark_C
-- It was Szopen, with an e.
You're right of course. I meant to type Szopen and had some kind of brain fart. grin

Originally Posted by Mark_C
-- Are you sure that's the best way to show the pronunciation of Jerzy?
For sure it's better than what most Americans would say ha ....but as far as I've known, including from recent acquaintance with a Polish person with that name (the translator at the Chopin competition), the last vowel is a shorter sound, like the i in pin.
You're right again. It's a short vowel but there isn't really a good equivalent of the consonant. It's like the Frech 'j' in "je".

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FWIW here are some pronunciations submitted by people from Poland:

https://forvo.com/word/fryderyk_chopin/

To my ears, the second vowel seems to range from ə (as in 'open') to ɛ (as in 'ten'), less so of the latter. But certainly not an open vowel æ (as in 'pan') !


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I imagine that Polish people named Jerzy are happy enough with how American people say it as long as they don't say "Jersey." grin

Just knowing that the J isn't an English J is pretty good....

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what about grammar? Maybe that's a different subject, but I noticed on my local classical music station king.org, the announcers, hosts, and any interviewed musicians, tend to say:

"Concertos" instead of "concerti".
"Tempos" instead of "tempi".

So part of the foreign word was accepted and assimilated, but when it comes to the plural ending, the tendency is to replace that part of the word with the English ending. This shows, in another way, that using foreign words is often problematic, both in pronunciation and grammar, leading to various hybrids or compromises.

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Originally Posted by Qazsedcft
Yes, in Polish we write Frederyk.
I mean't Fryderyk. It's obviously not my day today. wink

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Originally Posted by Jun-Dai
One thing I find a bit funny in the UK is the occasional tendency to be "slightly" more authentic
Have you ever heard of Tar-zhay? ha


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Originally Posted by cygnusdei
Originally Posted by Jun-Dai
One thing I find a bit funny in the UK is the occasional tendency to be "slightly" more authentic
Have you ever heard of Tar-zhay? ha

Do you mean that fabulous store with the red bulls-eye for its logo?
grin


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Originally Posted by QuasiUnaFantasia
Take Bach, for example. In German his name ends in a sound which has no equivalent in ordinary English (as far as I am aware. Maybe the sound word "Blech!" comes quite close). I've heard his name spoken in English with such a long vowel sound, as to indicate some sort of religious experience for the speaker in speaking it. In German, the vowel is very short.

In Danish we invariably say "Bak" - or maybe I should write "Bark" to stress the deep "a" sound (so not like the word "back"), but the "r" is a very faint one.

The Scots pronounce the "ch" in "loch" (lake) the same way the Germans say "Bach". And many of us in England manage to pronounce "loch" and "Bach" correctly.

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Originally Posted by bennevis
Since we are un-bashing the French, just listen to how they pronounce the greatest composer who ever lived and who will ever live - Mozart.

Everyone there - and I mean everyone who is French, including musicians (unless they studied in Austria, Germany or UK) says "Moor-zaaaaaaaaaar".
That's interesting, because for 'Mozzarella' at least the first syllable seems to be pronounced the same way as in English (with a 't' sound). Could it be the difference between single z and double z?


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When speaking French, I rhyme Mozart with Beaux Arts (short o, long lingering a, no t), whereas la mozza (never say the whole thing) scans with pizza. The final a here is staccato.

But indeed to get back to the original question, I do stumble as I switch from using the pronunciation of the language I’m using for common terms which are virtually assimilated into the host language (eg adagio) into native accent when there is more to say (eg Satie’s indications!). Quite schizophrenic

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Originally Posted by agent8698
what about grammar? Maybe that's a different subject, but I noticed on my local classical music station king.org, the announcers, hosts, and any interviewed musicians, tend to say:

"Concertos" instead of "concerti".
"Tempos" instead of "tempi".

So part of the foreign word was accepted and assimilated, but when it comes to the plural ending, the tendency is to replace that part of the word with the English ending. This shows, in another way, that using foreign words is often problematic, both in pronunciation and grammar, leading to various hybrids or compromises.
Lol, yes - although I think I would bite my lip if someone says 'concerti' in English context. But something like Moments musicaux - the collection is plural, but it would be incorrect to say 'Moments musicaux no. 3' (I think) because the individual piece is Moment musical. But would it be comical if you say "I'm playing Schubert's Musical moment no. 3" ? grin


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Originally Posted by bennevis
You come unstuck if you don't know the English pronunciation/'version' of countries and you're talking to anyone else. I know that because in my native language, our names for all other countries around the world bear absolutely no resemblance to the names used either by English speakers or the native people of those countries

Some colleagues at work once checked out a new software package and found they could select a different language. Picked a fairly obscure one - just to see what it looked like - then took forever to switch it back because they didn't know that language's word for "English".

BTW, during the Reagan administration - Contras and Sandinistas, etc., one CNN reporter always insisted on saying "Nee car Ahg wa".

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Topical: https://www.economist.com/johnson/2010/09/23/are-barack-obamas-foreign-pronunciations-too-authentic

I noticed that Biden pronounces Taliban Tall-ee-bahn, which is probably more correct than the more common American pronunciation, but it definitely sticks out when he says it.

Pronouncing names from other languages is definitely a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't situation. There's usually a conventional pronunciation that's the safest available option, but it's frustrating if you've learned something of the language and know how to pronounce something like adagio. Or for subtler things like allegretto or diminuendo, if you make a point of trying to pronounce it the Italian way, it comes across rather strangely.

I think this is even more common in food — it would be quite an affectation to pronounce ramen correctly when speaking English and so I never would, but when faced with a full sushi menu at some point I'll switch to Japanese pronunciations because it's too painful to try to figure out the conventional English pronunciation for ikura, maguro, inari, hirame, etc. Context, of course, is everything.

Sometimes this results in interesting shibboleths. In the Bay Area, you can usually tell if someone is from out of town if they pronounce San Rafael with four syllables while speaking English.

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Originally Posted by Jun-Dai
but when faced with a full sushi menu at some point I'll switch to Japanese pronunciations because it's too painful to try to figure out the conventional English pronunciation for ikura, maguro, inari, hirame, etc.

As long as you say 'carry-oaky', you'll be fine

whome


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Originally Posted by Jun-Dai
Sometimes this results in interesting shibboleths. In the Bay Area, you can usually tell if someone is from out of town if they pronounce San Rafael with four syllables while speaking English.

Or the weirdly cobbled-together half-English half-Spanish pronunciation of "Vallejo" Not va-LAY-jo. Not va-YAY-ho. But va-LAY-ho. Go figure.


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Regarding Chopin, I think I kind of say Shopan, or Shopa', and I don't mind that it sounds French because it's a French name although he was born in Poland.

I don't know how much all of this matters. We have this thing in Britain that we say foreign words in a British accent - it could be Scottish, English, Irish or Welsh. I notice in America there's more effort to use the correct pronunciation but this sometimes ends up in a somewhat humorous fudge.

The important thing is we all know what we're talking about, I guess.


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we had this anglo-saxon pianoteacher at the institute who spoke about: Scare-laddy', and Shopan, and Beathoven and Mosart and I won't mention all the french composers, omg.


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I listen to Show-pan as I prepare coco-van for my guests from Ja-pan


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I learnt my pronunciation of 'foreign' names from the good ol' BBC, and their Radio 3 presenters do make an effort to get things right. They even (bless 'em) pronounce "Leoš Janáček" the way he is pronounced, with the stresses in the right place. Having travelled widely around the world - especially Europe, of course - I never have any trouble conversing with natives about their own composers (copying exactly the way BBC presenters say them).....even if those are the only foreign names I could pronounce correctly.

In the past, they even went a bit overboard in their efforts to pronounce foreign names correctly. I still remember a veteran (and well-loved) female presenter introducing a debut live concert on Radio 3 by Jorge Bolet, strenuously pronouncing his name the Cuban-Spanish way. At the end of the concert, she completely (and unabashedly) changed his name to "George Borelett" grin. Obviously, the pianist had a few words with her in between pieces, when he was backstage, to inform her that he'd long ago 'anglicized' his name after moving to the US.

Incidentally, for those interested in such trivialities, Marc-André Hamelin has made it known fairly recently that he would prefer to have his surname pronounced the English way (Ham-a-leen) rather than the French way ('arm-mer-lang.........sort of). At least, that's what the Beeb told us whistle.


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This reminds me of a friend from Italy - she said it's LAT-te, not lat-tay. And she rolled her eyes at 'frappuccino' 🙄


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