Speech Prosody 2004

Nara, Japan
March 23-26, 2004

Acoustic Morphology of Expressive Speech: What about Contours?

Véronique Aubergé, Nicolas Audibert, Albert Rilliard

Institut de la Communication Parlée, Université Stendhal/INPG/CNRS, Grenoble, France

The modeling of emotional prosody in terms of contours vs. gradual cues is a recurrent question [6]. This work aims at showing that the validity of contours for characterizing emotions expressions could be revisited (1) by integrating gradual tuning on contours, in a superpositional Gestalt approach [1, 2] (2) by analyzing one parameter after the other the multiparametric contours into fine-grained contour details after having ensured that the observed stimuli express "pure" emotional variations. Acted and authentic stimuli were therefore induced following a wizard of Oz method [3]. The corpus was labeled by the selected speaker himself. The F0 contours were not a priori stylized. Analysis of "neutral" acted and authentic stimuli confirms the validity of the method and the freezing of linguistic variations in the corpus. Different kinds of pattern behaviors appeared from the analysis, with different characteristics for acted vs. authentic stimuli.


  1. Aubergé V., 1992. Developing a structured lexicon for synthesis of prosody, in Talking Machine, Bailly & Benoit Eds, Elsevier
  2. Aubergé V., 2002. A Gestalt morphology of prosody directed by functions : the example of a step by step model developed at ICP, Proc of 1st Int Conf on Speech Prosody, Aix-en-Provence, 151-155
  3. Aubergé, V; Audibert, N; Rilliard, A, 2003. Why and how to control emotional speech corpora. 8th European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology, 185-188.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Aubergé, Véronique / Audibert, Nicolas / Rilliard, Albert (2004): "Acoustic morphology of expressive speech: what about contours?", In SP-2004, 201-204.