Opus Colorado

Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra and Composer Missy Mazzoli To Receive Music Alive: New Partnerships Grant
October 22, 2014, 7:13 pm
Filed under: News

The grant comes from the League of American Orchestras and New Music USA for One-Week Residency.

The Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra and Missy Mazzoli are just one of twelve orchestras and composers who have been selected to receive Music Alive: New Partnerships grants of $7,500 each from the League of American Orchestras and New Music USA. Matching composers and orchestras who have not previously worked together, the program will support a series of one-week residencies between 2014 and 2016, each culminating in the performance of an orchestral work from the composer’s catalog. Orchestras with operating budgets of approximately $7 million and below were eligible to apply.

“We are thrilled to be able to welcome a composer of Missy’s caliber and creativity for a residency in our city,” said Boulder Philharmonic Executive Director Kevin Shuck. “The Boulder Phil seeks to connect our community with the most engaging orchestral music from yesterday and today, and Missy will be an excellent guide and ambassador for us in this endeavor. We look forward to weaving her music and her voice into an upcoming season program.”

“I am so thrilled to be working with the Boulder Phil,” said composer Missy Mazzoli. “There are so many possibilities and I have already enjoyed our conversations and sharing of ideas. This will be my first time in Colorado and I’m very happy that it’s under these circumstances.”

“These new Music Alive residencies provide communities across the country with invaluable opportunities to hear the music of our time while connecting in-person with these talented composers,” said League President and CEO Jesse Rosen. “Supporting orchestras in their commitment to perform the works of living American composers has always been an institutional priority for the League, with programs such as Ford Made in America and the ASCAP Awards for Adventurous Programming historically playing an important role at the organization.”

“Through the generosity of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and our other funders, we are delighted to be continuing our support of collaborations between composers and orchestras,” commented Ed Harsh, President and CEO of New Music USA. “Through Music Alive and in many other ways, New Music USA supports the dynamic, sustained relationships between individual creative artists and orchestras that are essential to a healthy musical ecology.”

The other composer/orchestra partnerships are:

• Clarice Assad and Boston Landmarks Orchestra
• Douglas Cuomo and Grant Park Music Festival (Chicago)
• Annie Gosfield and Chautauqua Symphony (NY)
• Takuma Itoh and Tucson Symphony Orchestra
• Jingjing Luo and Princeton Symphony Orchestra (NJ)
• Rick Robinson and River Oaks Chamber Orchestra (Houston)
• Carl Schimmel and Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra (New Orleans)
• Laura Schwendinger and Richmond Symphony Orchestra (VA)
• Derrick Spiva and Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra
• Sumi Tonooka and South Dakota Symphony Orchestra (Sioux Falls)
• Dan Visconti and Arkansas Symphony Orchestra (Little Rock)

Recently deemed “one of the more consistently inventive, surprising composers now working in New York” (New York Times) and “Brooklyn’s post-millennial Mozart” (Time Out New York), Missy Mazzoli’s music has been performed globally by the Kronos Quartet, eighth blackbird, New York City Opera, the Minnesota Orchestra and many others. She is Composer-in-Residence with Opera Philadelphia, and in 2011-2012 was composer-in-residence with the Albany Symphony. In February 2012 Beth Morrison Projects presented Song from the Uproar, Mazzoli’s first multimedia chamber opera. The work had a sold-out run at venerable New York venue The Kitchen. The Wall Street Journal called this work “both powerful and new”, and the New York Times claimed that “in the electric surge of Mazzoli’s score you felt the joy, risk and limitless potential of free spirits unbound.” Recent months included the premiere of an extended work for Kronos Quartet at Carnegie Hall as well as new works performed by pianist Emanuel Ax and the Detroit Symphony. Mazzoli is an active pianist, and often performs her music with her ensemble Victoire. Their album Cathedral City was named one of 2010’s best classical albums by Time Out NY, NPR, the New Yorker and the New York Times. In February 2014 they will perform a set of new material at Carnegie Hall, joined by percussionist Glenn Kotche of Wilco. Missy Mazzoli recently joined the faculty at Mannes College of Music, and her works are published by G. Schirmer.

Additional composer bios can be found here.

Forty-four orchestras and 219 composers applied for the program and two artistic panels selected the twelve grantees. Each residency will include a performance of a work by the composer, as well as individually tailored events, enabling the composers to reach new audiences, interact with youth, and take part in community-centered activities.

Now in its 14th year, Music Alive supports composer residencies in the concert halls and communities of orchestras throughout the country by providing funding, administrative support, and resources for both short and multi-year orchestra-composer collaborations. In addition to the new Music Alive: New Partnerships program, Music Alive also currently supports a three-year residency program for five composers and orchestras, most recently announced in 2013. Since 1999, there have been 127 Music Alive orchestral residencies; that number includes 78 individual orchestras and 110 individual composers (several orchestras and composers have participated multiple times). Music Alive programs help orchestras increase new music opportunities for audiences, artists, and administrators; identify model practices for sustained partnerships between artists and communities; help orchestras fully and comprehensively achieve their missions; and enrich orchestral repertoire with fresh and inventive music of our time.

More information on Music Alive is available here.

Funding for Music Alive is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, The ASCAP Foundation Bart Howard Fund, the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts, and The Amphion Foundation.

The Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra is one of Colorado’s premier ensembles, with growing, enthusiastic audiences under the vision and leadership of Music Director Michael Butterman. The Boulder Phil’s main concert series is presented at Macky Auditorium on the University of Colorado campus. From multi-genre productions to concerts with a unique hometown flavor, the Phil’s imaginative programming has resulted in increasing numbers of sold-out concerts and nationwide notice in Symphony magazine. In recent seasons the Phil has collaborated with 45 local organizations, encompassing arts, science, nature, youth, social services and more. Founded in 1958, the Boulder Phil today reaches audiences of over 20,000, with performances from Arvada to Highlands Ranch as well as regular invitations to perform at the prestigious Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek. The Boulder Phil reaches thousands of 4th and 5th grade students in 28 schools with its interactive Discovery Concerts, and fosters new talent with the annual Young Artist Concerto Competition and side-by-side youth orchestra concerts. Visit BoulderPhil.org.

The League of American Orchestras leads, supports, and champions America’s orchestras and the vitality of the music they perform. Its diverse membership of approximately 800 orchestras across North America runs the gamut from world-renowned symphonies to community groups, from summer festivals to student and youth ensembles. The only national organization dedicated solely to the orchestral experience, the League is a nexus of knowledge and innovation, advocacy, and leadership advancement for managers, musicians, volunteers, and boards. Its conferences and events, award-winning Symphony magazine, website, and other publications inform music lovers around the world about orchestral activity and developments. Founded in 1942 and chartered by Congress in 1962, the League links a national network of thousands of instrumentalists, conductors, managers and administrators, board members, volunteers, and business partners. Visit americanorchestras.org.

New Music USA is devoted to fostering the creation, dissemination, and enjoyment of new American music. New Music USA places special emphasis on broadening the public community for the music and musicians whom we serve. Advocacy in the broadest sense is at the heart of all of New Music USA’s work. It is inherent in the work of the online magazine NewMusicBox and radio station Counterstream, in all of New Music USA’s grant making activity—which distributes more than one million dollars each year to the field—and in New Music USA’s role as a key voice in the national and international scenes. Newmusicusa.org

October 16, 2014, 6:49 pm
Filed under: News

Boulder, CO (October 13, 2014) Newly formed Pathways To Jazz awarded five grants to deserving musicians to help them achieve their dream of making a new recording of their music.
Award winners include pianist Scott Martin, singer Barbara Paris, pianist Paul Shinn, pianist
Annie Booth, and singer Bonnie Lowdermilk.

Pathways to Jazz knows the value that recorded work plays in furthering artistry and awards grants to jazz musicians to support the costs associated with producing recordings. The mission of Pathways to Jazz is to provide opportunities for jazz musicians of all ages to succeed in their artistic, educational and career development. Pathways to Jazz seeks to connect people with the rich tradition of jazz in our musical heritage and to expand the reach of that music to a wide audience. It is the hope that these grants will assist talented performers in producing professional, quality media for commercial distribution and self-promotion.

Pathways to Jazz will offer this grant again in summer 2015. To be eligible an artist must have the capability to produce a studio-quality recording, can evidence a strong artistic track record, would clearly benefit from producing a recording in terms of artistic development and would further and preserve jazz music. Emerging and established artists are eligible, and recorded works can be original or the works of other contemporary composers. The creative control of the recording remains with the artist.

As an individual, organization or business you can support the mission of Pathways To Jazz to support musicians and to provide wider exposure for jazz music by making a donation to the project through the Boulder County Arts Alliance. http://www.bouldercountyarts.org

For more information please call or email Sarah Goodroad. For more information on each award recipient please visit their websites:

Annie Booth: http://www.annieboothmusic.com
Scott Martin: http://www.scottmartinmusic.com
Barbara Paris: http://www.barbaraparis.com
Bonnie Lowdermilk: http://www.bonnielowdermilk.com
Paul Shinn: http://www.paulshinntrio.com

Pathways To Jazz is sponsored by the Boulder County Arts Alliance.

Sarah Goodroad
Administrative Director

CONTACT: Alan Cogen, Founder

Announcing: Better Boettcher Bash
October 7, 2014, 7:02 pm
Filed under: News

New plan for Boettcher Concert Hall, 25th anniversary celebrated in October 26 Concert and Fundraiser

The Colorado Symphony is thrilled to announce the Better Boettcher Bash, Colorado Symphony 25th Anniversary Celebration, to take place Sunday, October 26 at Boettcher Concert Hall. A concert and fundraiser, the Better Boettcher Bash celebrates the orchestra’s legacy as well as a bold new vision for its home.

Conducted by Scott O’Neil, the Better Boettcher Bash will feature music from the Colorado Symphony as well as Natasha Paremski, world-renown pianist and favorite of Colorado Symphony audiences. Cellist Zuill Bailey will also join the orchestra for a program that includes traditional and beloved pieces from the symphonic canon, from Tchaikovsky and Saint-Saëns to Bernstein and Williams. Belen de Leon of 9News will host. Admission is available with a tax-deductible donation of $50, $100, or $200. All proceeds support the Better Boettcher campaign.

The Better Boettcher Bash falls on the silver anniversary of a groundbreaking cultural moment in 1989, when the Denver Symphony became the Colorado Symphony.

Last month, the Colorado Symphony unveiled a plan to renovate Boettcher Concert Hall, its home of 35 years. Built for the Colorado Symphony and recognized as one of the most unique concert venues in the world, Boettcher Concert Hall is in need of overdue repair as well as upgrades to fit the changing needs of one of the great orchestras in the United States. The Better Boettcher Plan, created by Denver’s Semple Brown Design, re-envisions Boettcher Concert Hall as a flexible, multi-media space with optimal acoustics and sound reinforcements. Details of the plan are available on the Colorado Symphony’s web site http://www.coloradosymphony.org.

“We believe Boettcher Concert Hall needs renovation, not demolition, and the public seems to agree with us,” says Jerome H. Kern, Colorado Symphony CEO and co-chair of its Board of Trustees. “Since we announced the Better Boettcher plan, we’ve heard from hundreds of community members who wish to support our efforts. The Better Boettcher Bash gives them an incredible opportunity to do so.”


Better Boettcher Bash
Colorado Symphony 25th Anniversary Celebration
Sunday, October 26
Boettcher Concert Hall, Denver Performing Arts Complex
Cocktails 5:30 pm
Concert 7:00 pm
Festive Attire
Contribution levels: $50/$100/$200
Contributions may be made by phone at 303-623-7876, online at http://www.coloradosymphony.org, or through the box office in Boettcher Concert Hall, located at 1000 14th Street, in the Denver Performing Arts Complex in downtown Denver. Hours are Monday through Friday, 10 am – 6 pm, and Saturday, noon – 6 pm.


One of the leading orchestras in the United States, the Colorado Symphony performs more than 150 concerts annually at Boettcher Concert Hall in downtown Denver and across Colorado. Led by internationally renowned Music Director Andrew Litton, the Colorado Symphony is home to eighty full-time musicians, representing more than a dozen nations, and regularly welcomes the most celebrated artists from the world of symphonic music and beyond. Every season, the Colorado Symphony serves more than 250,000 people from all walks of life, performing a range of musical styles, from traditional to contemporary. Recognized as an incubator of innovation, creativity, and excellence, the Colorado Symphony continually expands its reach through education, outreach, and programming. The Colorado Symphony partners with the state’s leading musical artists, cultural organizations, corporations, foundations, sports teams, and individuals to expose diverse audiences to the transformative power of music. To learn more, visit http://www.coloradosymphony.org

Colorado Bach Ensemble Announces Special Free Concert
October 3, 2014, 10:54 am
Filed under: News

The Colorado Bach Ensemble has announced a special free concert on October 25 at 5:00 pm. This short, late afternoon program will feature gems from the vocal, choral and instrumental music of JS Bach performed by artists from the ensemble. The concert will take place at Bethany Lutheran Church in Cherry Hills Village, 4500 East Hampden Avenue.

On the program, the ensemble’s organist Ken Mervine will perform Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor. Tenor Derek Chester and alto Marjorie Bunday will sing arias from the Christmas Oratorio, St. John Passion, and St. Matthew Passion accompanied by the CBE ensemble conducted by Artistic Director James Kim.

Violinist Jubal Fulks will perform three movements from Bach’s Partita #3 in E Major for Solo Violin ,and Principal Flautist, Michelle Stanley, will perform two movements from the Flute Sonata in Eb Major. Concluding the concert, James Kim will lead the chorus and continuo in a performance of Bach’s motet Lobet den Herrn. Each of the artists will provide brief commentary on the works they will be performing.

A backstage reception following the concert will offer an opportunity for interaction between the performers and audience members. Refreshments will be served.

In assembling this program, Dr. Kim expressed the hope that he will see many old ensemble friends from previous concerts, and he expressed a special hope that many new people might use this opportunity to discover the ensemble, described by independent critic Robin McNeill as “absolute perfection in every way”.


Colorado Bach Ensemble
Free One-Hour Concert
October 25, 2014 5:00 PM
Bethany Lutheran Church
4500 East Hampden Avenue
Cherry Creek Village, CO 80013
(free parking)

Boulder Symphony’s Annual Kids’ Halloween Extravaganza
October 3, 2014, 10:38 am
Filed under: News

The Curious Case of the Mysterious Maestro
October 25th
One Day, Two Events: 
An Afternoon Kids & Family Special and an Evening Symphony Series
Saturday, October 25th will be a day full of mysterious melodies as Boulder Symphony presents two concerts: a kid-centered matinee concert complete with Halloween-inspired festivities and an evening Symphony Series filled with Elgar, Beethoven, and Brahms.

Beginning at 2:00 PM, “The Curious Case of the Mysterious Maestro” is Boulder Symphony’s annual Halloween Family Concert.  This year kids are invited to help solve the mystery of Edward Elgar’s Enigma Variations as the symphony musicians present not only the symphonic pieces, but theatrical characters and a mystery-filled play, as well as a side-by-side performance with the Longmont Youth Symphony.

Costumes are encouraged as there will be a contest in which the Kids’ Costume Contest Winner gets to conduct the orchestra, as well as Boulder-style Trick-Or-Treating with healthy treats from local vendors and an Instrument Petting Zoo where kids get to try out various instruments, and get inspired.  Adults — wear your costumes too because there will also be prizes for grown-up winners.

All children 18 and under are invited to attend for free through Boulder Symphony’s Free Student Ticket Program.

Later in the day, at 7:00 PM, Boulder Symphony’s 3rd Symphony Series, “Mystery of the Enigma” takes the stage again with Elgar’s Enigma Variations.  Additionally, this concert will include Beethoven’s Coriolan Overture and Brahms’ Prelude and Fugue in G Minor, featuring soloist Devon Howard’s powerful and haunting playing of the giant Cassavant organ.

All performances take place at First Presbyterian Church Concert Hall, 1820 15th Street, in Boulder. Tickets are $15 (adults), $10 (seniors), $5 (college students), and free for children (K-12) and are available online at http://www.bouldersymphony.org, or at the door.

Boulder Symphony is the intrepid explorer in the vast universe that is symphonic music.  Dedicated to making symphonic music more accessible and relevant to people of all ages and backgrounds, Boulder Symphony introduces gifted new composers and musicians, adventurous world premieres, and focuses on educational outreach and interactive programs for youth.  Committed to consistent innovation, the Symphony embraces music’s transformative joy of discovery.

The Playground Ensemble 2014-2015 season
September 28, 2014, 2:43 pm
Filed under: News

Our New Residence at Metropolitan State University of Denver
The Playground Ensemble is excited to announce our new partnership with the Metropolitan State University of Denver. Our residency provides us with a new place to rehearse and more concerts at the King Center, and we provide our services to MSU@Denver students and faculty.

Playground Chamber Jazz Project

• Live on KUVO 89.3 FM on Sunday, September 28, 2014 at 8pm

• Performance at the Williams Recital Salon, Lamont School of Music, 2344 E Iliff, Denver on Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 7pm
o Tickets are $10

• Performance at Dazzle Jazz, 930 Lincoln Street in Denver on Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 7pm
o Tickets are $12 for general admission, $10 for students and seniors

The brainchild of 9th & Lincoln Orchestra’s Tyler Gilmore and Playground director Conrad Kehn, the group played its debut show in February 2010. The annual event is a staple of the Playground season. The line-up, featuring core members of the Playground and area jazz heavies, focuses on premiering new compositions that live in the cracks. Meditative ragas, fresh post-bop, and beautiful melodies- this is always a unique experience for Colorado audiences. A unique mix of high energy improvisation, ground breaking original jazz, and modern classical aesthetic. Get tickets early as these have a history of selling out!

Youth CoCoCo (Colorado Composer’s Concert)

• Performance at the Washington Park Center for Arts and Music, 400 S Williams St. in Denver – Sunday, December 14 at 7:00PM
o Free admission

The Playground is so active in the schools, encouraging young people to write chamber music. In the 2013- 2014 our Very Young Composers efforts were responsible for the creation of 90 pieces of new music by Colorado young people.
For the past nine years The Playground’s Colorado Composers Concert (CoCoCo) has featured music written by Colorado Composers. We have always held at least one spot on that concert for a K12 aged composer but we are receiving too many pieces, and too much good music.
It is time to give a broader voice to this important age group. By adding this concert to our season we are providing another opportunity for us to publically champion this new music.

Twentieth Century Masterpieces for String Quartet

• Performance at Peter Claver Recital, Regis University, 3333 Regis Blvd in Denver, on Monday, February 2nd  at 7:30 PM
o Tickets are $30 for general admission, $25 for military or seniors, and $10 for non-Regis students.

Join us for Reich’s Different Trains and commission premieres from David Farrell and Wes Devore. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steve Reich helped to redefine music in the mid-twentieth century with his minimalist innovations.  His 1988 work Different Trains, for string quartet and pre-recorded performance tape, contains Reich’s typical driving rhythms and highly repetitive structures.  The impetus for the work was the Jewish American composer’s recollection of childhood cross-country train trips during World War II, and his later awareness that at the same time, trains were taking millions of Europeans to Nazi concentration camps.  The piece includes pre-recorded samples of both train sounds and interviews with Holocaust survivors.

• Performance at First Presbyterian Church, 1820 15th St in Boulder, on Saturday, February 7 at 7PM
o Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and children under 18 attend for free.

Reich’s Different Trains and some works from September’s Chamber Electronica concert featured on the Boulder Symphony Chamber Series. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steve Reich helped to redefine music in the mid-twentieth century with his minimalist innovations.  His 1988 work Different Trains, for string quartet and pre-recorded performance tape, contains Reich’s typical driving rhythms and highly repetitive structures.  The impetus for the work was the Jewish American composer’s recollection of childhood cross-country train trips during World War II, and his later awareness that at the same time, trains were taking millions of Europeans to Nazi concentration camps.  The piece includes pre-recorded samples of both train sounds and interviews with Holocaust survivors.

• Performance at Dazzle Jazz, 930 Lincoln street in Denver, on Tuesday, March 3 at 7pm
o Tickets are $12 for general admission, $10 for students and seniors

Béla Bartók and Steve Reich are undisputed masters of twentieth-century music.  Bartók’s folk-influenced modernism was a powerful voice in the first half of the century, while Reich’s tech-savvy minimalism redefined music for the second half.  The two string quartets on this program, written nearly fifty years apart, showcase the two composers’ prodigious gifts.  They also give two radically different perspectives on World War II.  Béla Bartók’s sixth quartet of 1939 was the composer’s last work written in his native Hungary.  It gives voice to the composer’s grief at the destruction of Europe and his forced flight from his homeland.  The impetus for Reich’s Different Trains, from 1988, was the Jewish American composer’s recollection of childhood cross-country train trips during World War II, and his later awareness that at the same time, trains were taking millions of Europeans to Nazi concentration camps.  The quartet includes samples of recorded interviews with Holocaust survivors.

The 9th Annual Colorado Composer’s Concert (CoCoCo)

• Performance at the King Center concert hall on the Auraria Campus, on Saturday, April 25 at 7pm
o Tickets are $10

The Playground’s annual CoCoCo showcases chamber music written by residents of Colorado. To date CoCoCo has featured 80 works by 57 different Colorado-based composers including a number of K-12 composers. Each year one composer is commissioned to compose a new work specifically for the Playground. Be watching our web site for the next deadline and be sure to alert any composers you know to this opportunity.

Spoke N Motion Dance Collaboration

• Performance in May 2015, exact date, venue, and other details TBD
• In our ongoing attempts to collaborate with dance groups we are excited to announce this collaboration with Colorado’s integrated dance group for the able bodied, and those with disabilities. Keep checking our web site for further information!

Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra Presents Wings & Spirits, October 11, 2014
September 23, 2014, 7:27 pm
Filed under: News


Following its best-attended Opening Night concert in recent history, the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra continues its season, Legends: The Spirit of Boulder, on Saturday, October 11, at 7:30 p.m. at CU’s Macky Auditorium.

“Our October concert, Wings & Spirits, explores the themes of spirituality and transcendence,” said Music Director Michael Butterman. “Richard Strauss reflects on life’s essence in his masterpiece, the Four Last Songs, while shadowy figures haunt Apparition by Colorado composer Michael Udow. Colorful orchestration paints vivid images of famous mythical birds, including Stravinsky’s stunning Firebird,” said Butterman.

Featured guest artists include Brian Jones, the principal timpanist in the Dallas Symphony performing in Apparition, and Twyla Robinson, the soprano soloist in Four Last Songs, who made her Opera Colorado debut as the Countess in Le nozze di Figaro in 2012.

Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra Concert: Wings & Spirits
Saturday, October 11, 2014—7:30 p.m., Macky Auditorium, CU-Boulder
Pre-concert talk, 6:30 p.m., free to ticket-holders.

GRIFFES—The White Peacock  
UDOW—Apparition, featuring Brian Jones, timpani
STRAVINSKY—Suite from The Firebird (1919)
SIBELIUS—The Swan of Tuonela   
STRAUSS—Four Last Songs, featuring Twyla Robinson, soprano
Honoring the 150th Anniversary of Richard Strauss’s birth

Tickets: $13-$70 ($5 for students) at http://www.BoulderPhil.org and 303-449-1343, ext. 2.

“Café Phil” Free Open Rehearsal
Wednesday, October 6, 7:30–10 p.m.
Watch up-close as Music Director Michael Butterman works with the musicians of the Boulder Philharmonic to bring the music to life. Refreshments available for purchase. Dairy Center for the Arts, 2590 Walnut St. in Boulder.

Musical Hikes
Sunday, October 5, 8–10:30 a.m.
Tuesday, October 7, 5:30–7 p.m.
Paired with this Boulder Philharmonic concert are two bird-watching outings inspired by composers’ fascination with birds. Join Boulder Open Space & Mountain Parks naturalist Dave Sutherland for a bird-watching walk at Sawhill Ponds to search for local birds during the fall migration and explore ways that birds have been captured in classical music. Beautiful musical selections and fall colors guaranteed. Beginning bird watchers strongly encouraged. Bring binoculars if you have them and leave your dogs at home. Follow this link to the meeting place: https://bouldercolorado.gov/osmp/sawhill-ponds-trailhead.


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