Fundamental frequency in Estonian emotional read-out speech

  • Kairi Tamuri Institute of the Estonian Language, Roosikrantsi 6, 10119 Tallinn, Estonia
Keywords: Estonian, emotional speech, speech acoustics, fundamental frequency, synthetic speech, acoustic model of emotions

Abstract

Fundamental frequency (F0, perceived as pitch) is an important prosodic cue of emotion. The aim of the present study was to find out if sentence emotion has any influence detectable in the F0 height and range of Estonian read-out speech. Thus the F0 of each vowel found in Estonian read-out sentences was measured, and its median for three emotions (anger, joy, sadness) and for neutral speech was calculated. In addition, the F0 range was measured for emotional and neutral speech, as well as the height of F0 for sentence-initial and sentence-final positions. The results revealed that in the investigated material, F0 was highest for joy and lowest for anger. The F0 range, however, was widest for anger and narrowest for sadness. The differences in F0 height at the beginning versus the end of sentences were not statistically significant, either for pairs of emotions or for emotions compared with neutral speech.
Published
2014-06-08