Norwegians can certainly understand other Scandinavian languages, but at the same time, they are very proud of their own. If Norway is your target audience, you would certainly need to engage a Norvegian voice over actors.
To people outside Scandinavia, Swdish, Danish, or Norwegian might be hard to differentiate between. While these languages form a dialect chan and are more or less mutually intelligible, each of these languages, including the Norwegian, has its own specifics and a very focused audience.
Norwegian (Norwegian: norsk) is a North Germanic language spoken mainly in Norway, where it is the official language. Other North Germanic languages in Scandinavia include, Swedish, Danish, Icelandic, Faroean and few extinct languages. Early Norwegian literature, mainly poetry and historical prose, was written in West Norse and flourished between the 9th and the 14th centuries. After that Norway came under Swedish and then Danish rule. Norwegian continued to be spoken but Danish was used for officials purposes, as a literary language and in higher education. This is probably one of the reasons why there is so much focus on Norwegian language itself in the country.
There are around 5 million speakers in mainly in Norway. There are also some speakers of Norwegian in Denmark, Sweden, Germany, the UK, Spain, Canada and the USA.
Norwegian is a descendant of Old Norse, the common language of the Germanic peoples living in Scandinavia during the Viking Era. Initially, there was considerable debate in Norway about how to go about creating a national language and two languages emerged - Landsmål (national language), based on colloquial Norwegian and regional dialects, particularly the dialects of western Norway, and Riksmål (national language), which was primarily a written language and very similar to Danish. While the sound systems of Norwegian and Swedish are similar, considerable variation exists among the dialects.The dialects are roughly divided into Eastern and Western (Western includes most of the coast and the North – basically one big coast – while Eastern covers the inland region and the capital Oslo). As a linguistic rule of thumb when it comes to Norwegian dialects, water connects and mountains divide. Norway has a mountain ridge that divides East from West, and the most distinct dialects are found in the more remote, mountainous areas (not surprisingly). In addition to the Eastern and Western dialects, there is a much discussed distinction between rural and urban dialects. The city dialect of Bergen, for example, has only two grammatical genders, whilst normal Norwegian generously has three.
In Norwegian, vocal characteristics are partly dictated by the fact that noun-noun compounding is a very important and it often leads to the creation of extremely long words.
The sound system of Norwegian Bokmål has many similarities to those of Swedish and Danish. There are many differences in the pronunciation among the various dialects of Norwegian. The description below is based on Norwegian Bokmål. Bokmål has an inventory of nine long and nine short vowels with some variation among the dialects. Vowel length makes a difference in word meaning, e.g., tak with a long [a] means ‘roof’, while takk with a short [a] means ‘thank you’. In addition, there are three diphthongs /oi/, /ei/, /au/. In the table below length is indicated by a colon after the vowel. Rounded vowels are produced with protruded lips. One of the few things Norwegian has in common with Chinese is that it is tonal. Thankfully the intonation of words in Norwegian follows only a two-tone system, but it is enough to drop the language learner in it. “Tømmer” can either be “timber” or “emptying”. “Ta på” can either be “touch” or “get dressed”.
Norway with its magnificent fjords and mountainous terrain can easily compete for the title of most beautiful country in the world. It also has one of the strongest economies in Europe. Norwegians are known to be discerning consumers and you won’t impress them with anything less than the absolute best.
Get perfect Norwegian voice overs for your audio visual material and don’t settle for anything but purely professional voice actors. The Norwegians will notice if you take any shortcuts. Luckily, your route to an expert Norwegian voice over artist is simple and clear and you’re already halfway there now that you’ve discovered BunnyStudio.
Next steps: Browse our Norwegian voice talent or tell us what you’re looking for and let us find it for you. Give us your script. Do you need it translated? That’s easy for us. Give us as little as a few hours and you get exactly what you want: a polished, professional voice over in beautiful Norwegian.