14thAnnual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Lyon, France
August 25-29, 2013

Generating Fundamental Frequency Contours for Speech Synthesis in Yorùbá

Daniel R. van Niekerk, Etienne Barnard

North-West University, South Africa

We present methods for modelling and synthesising fundamental frequency (F0) contours suitable for application in text-to-speech (TTS) synthesis of Yoruba (an African tone language). These methods are discussed and compared with a baseline approach using the HMM-based speech synthesis system HTS. Evaluation is done by comparing ten-fold cross validation squared errors on a small corpus of four speakers. We show that the proposed methods are relatively effective at modelling and generating F0 contours in this context, achieving lower error rates than the baseline. These results suggest that our methods will be useful for the generation of improved synthesis of tone in African languages, which has been a challenge to date.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Niekerk, Daniel R. van / Barnard, Etienne (2013): "Generating fundamental frequency contours for speech synthesis in yorùbá", In INTERSPEECH-2013, 1027-1031.