Meet the voice behind ‘Stand clear of the closing doors’

While not every experience in New York City is a universal one, everyone with working ears who’s ridden the subway has heard the mellifluous voice that calmly asks you to please stand clear of the closing doors. Even on the C train, which gets some upgraded trains in the summers. Is there a person behind the voice? Or is it a clever machine? It turns out that voice does belong to a human, a man named Charlie Pellett, who “literally shares your pain” whenever the announcement he recorded about an unavoidable delay is played, because he’s probably on the train too.

In the 4-minute video profile by the New Yorker, Pellett explains that he’s British but purposefully lost his accent, and how he parlayed his radio experience into being the guy the MTA picked to record all of the modern train announcements when they decided to update them. Pellett is a pretty joyous guy who’s still thrilled to be the voice of the subway announcements, and we can’t really blame him since it seems pretty cool to be dubbed “The Most Recognizable Voice in New York.” That being said, now that you’ve got a face to match the voice, please don’t fantasize about punching Charlie Pellett if your train is stuck somewhere. It’s not his fault those clowns in Albany won’t do anything to help the city’s mass transit needs.

charlie pellett

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