Russian pronunciation presents to a foreigner, and specifically to Italians like me, several difficulties. These are the major problems I encountered, approximately in order of their importance:
- 0) Correct placement of word stress.
- 1) The sound ы, especially after м, б, п, в, ф.
- 2) Proper reduction of non-stressed vowels.
- 3) Proper use of vowel allophones (all vowels change somewhat their sound depending on whether they are stressed or not and on whether they are followed by a soft or hard consonant).
- 4) Pronunciation and contrast of л / ль
- 5) Practically all soft consonant sounds apart from нь (especially мь, бь, пь, вь, фь, рь and even more so if word-final).
- 6) Proper prosody and intonation ('rhythm').
I study Russian on my own so I have no feedback on my pronunciation; I've therefore put here a recording of myself reading a short story (there's no need to listen to all of it, of course) and I would be very grateful to hear some opinions on my delivery, if possible in reference to points 0-6 above, so that I can focus on those particular aspects. For example, listening to the recording, I think I mispronounced the word жители, but in general it is difficult for me to know what erroneous features and mispronunciations stand out the most. Thanks in advance!