|Developer(s)||Centre for Speech Technology Research (CSTR) of the University of Edinburgh|
|Initial release||October 12, 2004|
2.5.1 / July 6, 2020
|License||Special license similar to the MIT Software License|
Festival is a text to speech engine developed by the British at the Centre for Speech Technology Research (CSTR) division at the University of Edinburgh. It sounds very robot-like. The speech it creates is understandable but it is not anything remotely close human-sounding. It works, and it can be used for text to speech, but it is not the best free software alternative.
The basic festival software is typically available as package named
festival but the optional voice packages tend to be named
Voice files are placed in
Festival can say anything piped to it as long as the
echo 'hello' | festival --tts
You can pipe files to festival and have them read:
echo "Hello world" > example.txt festival --tts < example.txt
Festival can be configured by creating a
$HOME/.festivalrc configuration file.
Festival will create a incriminating text file called
$HOME/.festival_history with every command sent to it.
Festival is one of many programs that can be used with the Linux speech-dispatcher daemon. Programs like Kmouth will use Festival for text-to-speech if speech-dispatcher is configured to use it (Festival not the default on any GNU/Linux distribution we are aware of).
The text to speech output generated by Festival does not sound very natural, it is very robot-like. It is understandable. It's just not very human-sounding and it is not very impressive compared to commercial solution and it is not as good as the free software mimic alternative.
echo 'Hello, this is a test of the emergency broadcasting system' | festival --tts
See Text to Speech synthesis software for a indepth comparison of free text to speech software.
- Mimic, another text to speech synthesis tool.
- Kmouth, a KDE program where you can type text and have it read out loud.