Photo: Christine Glade/Shutterstock and angie.mcyen/TikTok

This Australian Woman Woke Up With a Surprising Irish Accent

by Olivia Harden May 13, 2021

The way we speak can often give away the country, region, and maybe even the neighborhood where we come from. But how would you feel if you woke up with an accent from a place you’ve never even traveled to?

Angie Yen is originally from Taiwan but has lived in Brisbane, Australia, since she was eight years old. Naturally, this caused her to develop an Australian accent. But 10 days after having tonsillitis surgery, the 27-year-old claims that she woke up with an Irish accent.

Yen decided to start vlogging about her very unusual condition on TikTok. One of her videos on the second day of her accent change has amassed over two million views and over 448,000 likes (at the time of writing). Although many of her new followers have different opinions on the style of accent, Irish seems to be the most popular opinion. At Matador Network, we even detect a Derry inflection.


Day 2: I still can’t believe I woke up with an Irish accent yesterday. I’ve never been to Ireland. I grew up in Australia. My Aussie accent is gone

♬ original sound – angie.mcyen

“I woke up with an Irish accent and I’ve never been to Ireland before. I spent the whole day yesterday freaking out about why this is happening to me and I went to the hospital and I also called my specialist and asked them why this is happening and they couldn’t provide any answers. They just told me to sit tight and let the body heal up after my tonsil surgery last Monday about nine to 10 days ago.

“At this stage, I don’t think it’s going to get better, because this morning I woke up with an Aussie accent and I was so happy. I called one of my best friends and told her that I have my accent back but during that phone call in the space of about five to 10 minutes, my accent was deteriorating and it was changing from an Aussie accent to an Irish one,” Yen said in the TikTok.

Yen is looking for answers about the condition, which appears to be a case of Foreign Accent Syndrome. Karl Kruszelnicki, an Australian science commentator, has been following her story and made a TikTok explaining that Foreign Accent Syndrome has only about 150 documented cases, and is typically caused by brain disorders related to head injury, stroke, or surgery.


Good luck on your journey @angie.mcyen ! Keep us posted. ##science ##drkarl ##drkarlkruszelnicki ##tiktokaustralia ##sciencetok

♬ original sound – Dr Karl

Yen intends to continue searching for answers with a neurologist, MRI, and blood tests. She also mentioned that she’s looking into acting coaches for speech therapy.

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