4th International Conference on Spoken Language Processing

Philadelphia, PA, USA
October 3-6, 1996

Synthesis of English Intonation using Explicit Models of Reading and Spontaneous Speech

M. E. Johnson

Department of Linguistics, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK

A model of English intonation is presented in which a variety of intonation contours can be generated from a quantitative prominence labelling of stressed syllables. In one style of speech production, spontaneous speech, a short-lookahead model can generate a variety of contours from the same quantitative prominence labelling. For another style, reading aloud, a long-lookahead model determines the types of intonation patterns associated with texts. These typically come out as sequences of downward-stepping contours, given appropriate initial conditions (though there is no explicit down-step constant in the model). In both styles, the intonation contours are generated on the basis of a quantitative model of contour pitch prominence, in which the pitch prominence of the contour segments which make up the accent contours (and thence the intonation contours) is computed as a nonlinear function of the duration of the contour segment, the ratio of the F0 value at one end of the segment to that at the other, and a rhythm constant.

Full Paper
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Bibliographic reference.  Johnson, M. E. (1996): "Synthesis of English intonation using explicit models of reading and spontaneous speech", In ICSLP-1996, 1844-1847.