NATS National Office: Updates

Dear NATS Member:


For the past 75 years NATS has relied on its engaged members at all levels to propel our organization forward. This year more members than ever before are engaged in a variety of nationally appointed committees and task forces addressing current and future needs of our industry. NATS is now in its 76th year of existence and embarking on a major strategic planning effort to position NATS for the future and reposition our resources to best serve our ever more diverse constituency. 

Every member was invited to participate in a member climate survey in March and the results are helping shape the work of the NATS Advancement Committee and NATS Strategic Planning Task Force as they shape both our strategic plan and our efforts at raising internal and external support to sustain and grow our association well into the future. We are grateful to the NATS Foundation for sharing with NATS, Inc. in the cost of engaging our consultants Strategic Funding Solutions. Between our Board of Directors and these two important groups, over 50 NATS members are directly involved in evaluating, prioritizing, and shaping a plan for the future. In early 2020, a draft strategic plan will be vetted among a variety of constituency groups within NATS with a goal of having a final plan in place in late Spring. 

NATS is the leader and largest association of voice teachers in the world! Collectively we have some of the leading minds in our diverse field as members, a leading journal that is respected and held up as a model around the world, a system of feedback auditions that provides experiences for well over 15,000 singers each year, a treasure trove of media for professional development, and so much more. 

NATS provides greater services than some of our sister associations in the industry whose member dues are much greater. Since the last dues increase, an impressive number of new services and activities have been provided our members and their students: The National Music Theater Competition, expansion of our auditions to include the National Student Auditions, a new website (which will be scheduled for a refresh in 2020), a national registration system for auditions, additional staff, NATS Live Learning Center, Vocapedia.infoSo You Want to Sing… book series, and new insurance options and other affinity relationships with a variety of partners. 

In order to provide for future challenges and opportunities, the Board of Directors, at its June 2019 National Board Meeting discussed at length and ultimately approved a dues increase beginning with our 2020 dues cycle to $120 for most membership categories. They approved a new simplified membership category structure proposed by our Membership Committee which includes eliminating the additional dues charge for international members. 

As we move through this planning cycle I hope you will be engaged by offering your feedback on how NATS can better serve you. You were asked to provide feedback with the member climate survey, yet if you did not take advantage of that opportunity or have had further thoughts since then, I strongly encourage you to send them forward directly to me (allen@nats.org) or president Karen Brunssen (president@nats.org). NOW is the time for your voice to be heard as we enter this critical phase of identifying and prioritizing future goals and action plans which will be our focus over the next 3-5 years. 

As you renew your dues we hope you will also take the opportunity to donate to our 75th Anniversary Campaign if you have not already done so. If you are a new donor your gift will be matched by the Kathryn Duax Challenge so your gift will have double the impact.  Your unrestricted gift helps us provide additional funds needed to advance our mission, strengthen our funding base, and expand programs like adding additional categories to the National Student Auditions. 

We wrap up our celebration of the 75 years of NATS next summer at our 2020 NATS National Conference in Knoxville, Tennessee, June 26-30th. We are planning an exciting conference full of many opportunities for us to engage with others in the profession and energize ourselves for the future. I am excited to share with you that Lawrence Brownlee will join us as a featured artist. Some of Larry’s earliest performing opportunities were at NATS auditions and we are so glad to have him join us. Much more is to be announced soon! Make plans now to join us. 

Allen HendersonExecutive Director
Karen BrunssenPresident

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NATS Student Audition Updates

NSA – NATIONAL STUDENT AUDITIONS

In February 2019, the NSA Committee sent a survey to all NATS chapter, district, and region auditions officers.  Responding to their needs and desires to become more inclusive of ALL singers regardless of gender, the NATS Board voted to make the following changes to the NSA regulations:

  1. Audition Category Names have been changed. (click here for complete list: 
    1. Odd-numbered categories (formerly titled “Women”) are changed to “Treble” to include students singing Soprano, Mezzo, Alto, or Countertenor.
    2. Even-numbered categories (formerly titled “Men”) are changed to “TBB” to include students singing Tenor, Baritone, and Bass.
  2. Music theater song literature has been added as an option for one selection of required repertoire.
  3. Improvements to the NATS Audition Rubrics:
    1. Change of scoring descriptors from “Lowest,” “Average,” and “Best” to “Developing,” “Advancing,” and “Accomplished.”
      1. Classical Rubric
    2. Expanded definitions of “Mix” and “Belt” on the Music Theater Rubric
      1. Musical Theater Rubric
    3. Teachers now have access to a Fillable PDF student-information sheet that they can send to all of their students to complete and return, so that teachers have all of the information they will need prior to completing the students’ registrations.
    4. Coming Soon:
      1. A national Contemporary Commercial Music (CCM) Rubric
      2. Classical, CCM, and Music Theater Style Sheets (specific descriptors of individual and varied styles/aspects within each category)

Please access new additions to the NSA Resource Center:

TABLETS/ELECTRONIC SCORES

The use of iPads and tablets as musical scores for collaborative pianists during all levels of NATS auditions has been approved and are held to the same standard as any other musical score used for auditions.

COPYRIGHT

Technological advances, which have changed accessibility to music while copyright law has remained stagnant, have created difficult issues for many NATS chapters and regions within our current policy.  In response to these concerns, the NATS National Board met with the NATS lawyer to review and discuss the U.S. Copyright Laws, NATS’ Copyright Policy, and NATS’ liability for copyright infringement.  As a result, the board voted to adopt the new policy as drafted by our lawyer.  We are currently finalizing revisions in the Copyright policy that will affect both the use of Tablets and the verification of all legal music scores.  We have had some delays but hope to send out the new information in the next week.  We believe these changes will allow us to protect NATS while also relieving entities of certain constraints.  

YEAR OF WOMEN COMPOSERS

The NATS Advocacy Committee, with the support of the NSA Committee and NATS leadership, is supporting an endeavor to promote diversity in repertoire selection by choosing a different theme biennially. Our first initiative will be vocal music by women composers. We want to encourage the membership to program music by women for the upcoming competition and recital seasons.  Our goal is to advance the repertoire of these composers by strong suggestion rather than by requirement. To that end we offer resources on the NATS website: https://www.nats.org/Women_Composers_Initiative.html

Please join us in making this an opportunity to discover, learn, and teach wonderful new repertoire that celebrates the contributions of women composers to our rich song heritage.  We ask all chapters, districts and regions to endorse this initiative and include this information in their 2019/20 audition season communication to their members. Some chapters have already decided to offer a special audition award for the best performance of a composition written by a woman.

We encourage NATS entities to add additional repertoire resources to the information already on the NATS web site by sending it to Loraine Sims, Chair of the NATS Advocacy Committee at lsims@lsu.edu.

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Deadline Extended to Monday, January 27 due to registration issues

I am extending the deadline due to a problem with the website. Also, if you have not found an accompanist, here are additional names:

Norfolk Area

Rachel Bradley 757-813-0124 rachmezzo@gmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Lisa Smith 703 868-0818 lisa.smith567@gmail.com(Classical and Musical Theatre) Friday only

Winchester Area

Dave Chavez 703-798-1433 dave@davidechavez.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Randy Martono Chai 909-266-6937 randy.martono-chai@hotmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Karen Schlosser 540-664-6730kschlos@yahoo.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

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Copyright and IPad usage

Please note the important change in policy regarding IPads and the checking of copyright. The emphasis is on “obvious”.

Obvious Infringement

NATS will prohibit competitors who are obviously infringing upon copyright from taking part in our events, and thereby NATS does not become a contributory partner in infringement.  Auditions chairs are solely charged with this responsibility.  Because of the difficulties in determining which tablet copies of scores are authorized and which are infringing, and because of the ubiquitous use of tablets today, NATS no longer performs this investigative role so long as (i) the infringement is non-obvious, and (ii) the tablet owner certifies it is an authorized copy and agrees to indemnify NATS. 

If auditions chairs notice a pianist using a tablet obviously containing photos of a score (or a pianist using obvious unauthorized photocopies of a score), then the auditions chair will not allow the performance to proceed with those obviously infringing materials.  The intention of the NATS Copyright Policy is not to thrust audition chairs into an investigative role as copyright investigators.  The approach audition chairs should take is “If the infringement is obvious, performance cannot be allowed; if infringement is not obviously occurring and the performer tells NATS they are using an authorized copy, then NATS will not investigate further and performance will be allowed.”

iPad USAGE

Use of Tablets by Collaborative Pianists

  • The use of iPads and tablets as musical scores for collaborative pianists during all levels of NATS auditions has been approved and are held to the same standards of copyright as any other musical score used for auditions.
  • For clarification on appropriate use of tablets please visit the NATS Commonly Asked Copyright Questions for Teachers, Accompanists, and Students document located in the NATS Copyright Resource Center.
  • As long as the singer and pianist affirm that they are in compliance with the NATS Copyright Policy, the pianist may use a personal tablet to display a stored electronic version of sheet music.  However, obvious copyright infringement will not be allowed, and may result in disqualification from the competition.  Adjudicators are not copyright investigators.  This is solely the job of the auditions chairs. If auditions chairs see Obvious infringement (whether in digital or paper form), they are compelled to do something.
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Two More Days to Register!

Just two more days until registration closes! So far we have 237 auditions registered. If you are looking for a pianist, here are some possible suggestions:

Norfolk Area

Rachel Bradley 757-813-0124  rachmezzo@gmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Joe Ritchie 407-719-1638 joerit13@gmail.com  (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Lisa Smith  703 868-0818 lisa.smith567@gmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Winchester Area

Dave Chavez 703-798-1433  dave@davidechavez.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Randy Martono Chai 909-266-6937 randy.martono-chai@hotmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)  

Karen Schlosser 540-664-6730kschlos@yahoo.com  (Classical and Musical Theatre) 

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IMPORTANT VANATS 2020 AUDITION INFORMATION

Two important announcements:

  1. The registration deadline has been extended to Friday, January 24!!! Hopefully this will give you all more time to organize your students (I know I need it myself!) Registration is through the nats.org website.
  2. We have had many inquiries for local pianists. Here are 4 recommendations:

Norfolk Area PianistsRachel Bradley 757-813-0124 rachmezzo@gmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Jack Levick 941-266-6147 jacklevick@cox.net

Joe Ritchie 407-719-1638 joerit13@gmail.com (Classical and Musical Theatre)

Lisa Smith 703-868-0818 lisa.smith567@gmail.com

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Technology Updates and Survey Request

As you may have noticed, we have a new Facebook page that now houses our VANATS Members group. The Facebook page Virginia NATS  is open to the public for anyone to follow. This is where you can post upcoming events, important news, and other information that can be shared with everyone. 

The Facebook group has been renamed VANATS Members and is available only to those who have paid the VANATS dues. This is where members can discuss and post member specific information that you don’t want shared publicly. To access this group, go to the Virginia NATS page and select “Groups”.

In addition to updating the social media presence, we are working on refreshing our website. In order to continue to make social media and website updates, please fill out this survey to help us know how to better serve you.

If you have any specific concerns or questions about our website or social media presence that is not in the survey, please reach out to us at virginianats@gmail.com or message the Virginia NATS Facebook page.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Sarah Hamilton
VA NATS Technology Advisor

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2019 National Student Auditions Semifinalists

Congratulations to all Virginia students and teachers who are advancing to Semifinals!

The semifinal round will be held on Thursday, June 27 and Friday, June 28, 2019. The top three singers in each category from the semifinal round of competition will advance to the live National Finals on Friday, June 28, 2019.

Charles Wolfer (4 – High School Men)
From the studio of Amy Ayre

Claire Cook (5 – Lower College Music Theater Women)
From the studio of Judith Cline

Michael Peck (6 – Lower College Music Theater Men)
From the studio of Brian Nedvin

Camila Maric (7 – Lower College/Independent Studio Women)
From the studio of Lucy Owen Hoyt

Rashonda Bentley (9 – Upper College Music Theater Women)
From the studio of Mindy Damon

Hana Tawil (9 – Upper Colege Music Theater Women)
From the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

Rachel Gore (9 – upper College Music Theater Women)
From the studio of Patricia O Campbell

Darby Clinard (11 – Upper College/Independent Studio Women)
From the studio of Kevin McMillan

Mary Galvin (11 – Upper/Independent Studio Women)
From the studio of Carrie Stevens

Joel Clemens (12 – Upper College/Independent Studio Men)
From the studio of Kevin McMillan

Michael Richardson (14 – Advanced College/Independent Studio Men)
From the studio of Kevin McMillan

Nicholas Carratura (14 – Advanced College/Independent Studio Men)
From the studio of Melissa Chavez

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Mid-Atlantic NATS Artist Awards (NATSAA) Preliminaries

NATSAA 2020
46th NATS Artist Awards Competition for Singers

October 11-12, 2019
Katzen Arts Center
American University
Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC

Application deadline: September 9, 2019
Visit: https://www.nats.org/nats-artist-awards.html

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VANATS Saturday, March 2, 2019 Results

SUPERLATIVE AWARDS

Best High School Female – Musical Theater: Azariah Boyd from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

Best High School MaleMusical Theater: Brevan Collins from the studio of Aimee Barnes

Best High School Female – Classical: Colleen Clark from the studio of Kathleen Bell

Best High School Male Classical: Julio Aleman from the studio of Randall Speer

Best OVERALL High School: Elissa Dresdner from the studio of Alan Fisher

CATEGORY RESULTS

CATEGORY 1A–1 Lower High School Musical Theater Women

1. Saniyyah Bamberg (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Nicole Jones (H) from the studio of Aimee Barnes

3. Mary Brigham (H) from the studio of Maura Brigham

Honors

    Bella Burke from studio of Silvia Ledon     

    Vani Subramanian from the studio of Joan Jurenas

    Anjali Sharma from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Jaya Pania from the studio of Joan Jurenas

CATEGORY 1A–2 Lower High School Musical Theater Women

1. Lauren Miles (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Alyssa Crowley (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Maddie Foster (H) from the studio of Sylvia Ledon

2. Evie Izdepski (H) from the studio of Laura Halick

Honors

    Kathryn Nickel from the studio of Laura Halick

    Julia Stein from the studio of Lani Jacobson

    Kaylin Perks from the studio of Laura Halick

    Claire Centola from the studio of Danielle Talamantes

    Lucy Mason from the studio of Cara Cammaroto

    Lucy O’Neil from the studio of Janette Ogg

CATEGORY 1B–1 Upper High School Musical Theater Women

1. Kamila Adamczyk (H) from the studio of Rachel Ackerman

2. Olivia Anderson (H) from the studio of Silvia Ledon

3. Carolyn Best (H) from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

3. Angela Giaconia from the studio of Amanda Fish

Honors

    Morgan Royal-Hartman from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Gabrielle Pinkney from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Kylee Downie from the studio of Amanda Fish

    Colleen Clark from the studio of Kathleen Bell

    Olivia Butler from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Jessica Brown from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Courtney Arp from the studio of Kathleen Bell

CATEGORY 1B–2 Upper High School Musical Theater Women

1. Madeleine LeBeau (H) from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

2. Isabella Panciocco (H) from the studio of Lani Jacobson

3. Grace Vestermark (H) from the studio of Connie Bloomer

Honors

    Hannah Ramsbottom from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Diana Halick from the studio of Joan Jurenas

    Ava Stevenson from the studio of Brian Nedvin

    Rebekah Blackburn from the studio of Maura Brigham

    Noelle Buice from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Danielle Huser from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Danielle Mason from the studio of Laura Halick

    Eleanor Jacobson from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Julia Ferri from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Marcie Van de Voorde from the studio of Connie Bloomer

    Alexandra Park from the studio of Cara Transtrom

    Kendall Pierce from the studio of Melissa Chavez

    Gillian Saunders from the studio of Maura Brigham

    Grace Shields from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Madelynn Shores from the studio of Kathleen Bell

    Katie Stansel from the studio of Joan Jurenas

CATEGORY 1B–3 Upper High School Musical Theater Women

1. Cynthia Hu (H) from the studio of Peggy McNulty

2. Elissa Dresdner (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

3. Azariah Boyd (H) from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

Honors

    Annie Wood from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Emily Pasquinelli from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Natalie McGeachy from the studio of Janette Ogg

    Reagan Lagasse from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Grace Harkins from the studio of Sherry Doyle

    Olivia Hollowell from the studio of Mary Matthews

    Olivia Escalante from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

    Lauren Gutierrez from the studio of Mindy Damon

    Hannah Brockhausen from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Bella Cox from the studio of Silvia Ledon

CATEGORY 2A Lower High School Musical Theater Men

1. Brevan Collins (H) from the studio of Aimee Barnes

2. Zachary Karnes (H) from the studio of Melissa Chavez

3. Stanley Oaks (H) from the studio of Eric Hanson

Honors

    Logan Sandefur from the studio of Amy Asbury

    Josh Lemons from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

CATEGORY 2B Upper High School Musical Theater Men

1. Kevin Nentwich (H) from the studio of Silvia Ledon

2. Maxwell Branciforte (H) from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

3. Daniel Kroll (H) from the studio of Silvia Ledon

Honors

    Donte Thompson from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Joe Malone from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Joshua Higgins from the studio of Mary Matthews

    Eryk Nicolay from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Max Foster from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Jack Dalrymple from the studio of Cara Transtrom

    Sean Hartigan from the studio of Maura Brigham

CATEGORY 3A-1 Lower High School Women

1. Holly Romanelli (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Emily Coyle (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

3. Allie Terrell (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

Honors

    Liesl Winternitz from the studio of Laura Halick

    Tracy Waagner from the studio of Peggy McNulty

    Sofia Vazquez from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Alexandra Curcio from the studio of Anne Wick

    Claire Huchthausen from the studio of Sherry Doyle

    Abigale Jackson from the studio of Wayne Kompelien

    Lucy Mason from the studio of Cara Commaroto

    Marilyn Dupont from the studio of Kathleen Bell

    Catalina Lara from the studio of Mary Matthews

CATEGORY 3A–2 Lower High School Women

1. Lauren Miles (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Saniyyah Bamberg (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

3. Alyssa Crowley (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

Honors

    Amari Smith-Shields from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

    Meghan McAndrew from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

CATEGORY 3B–1 Upper High School Women

1. Colleen Clark (H) from the studio of Kathleen Bell

2. Ashley Seminaro (H) from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

2. Hannah Brockhausen (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

Honors

    Olivia Anderson from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Grace Vestermark from the studio of Connie Bloomer

    Marcie Van de Voorde from the studio of Connie Bloomer

    Lulu Hire from the studio of Melissa Chavez

    Julia Ferri from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Rachel Bloom from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Olivia Butler from the studio of Silvia Ledon

    Noelle Buice from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Megan Beach from the studio of Ann Stewart

CATEGORY 3B–2 Upper High School Women

1. Elissa Dresdner (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Madeleine LeBeau (H) from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

3. Leila Davis (H) from the studio of Michelle Perrine

Honors

    Olivia Hollowell from the studio of Mary Matthews

    Gabrielle Pinkney from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Rebekah Blackburn from the studio of Maura Brigham

    Rachel Milam from the studio of Brenda Witmer

    Eleanor Jacobson from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

    Kennedy Stone from the studio of Alan Fisher

CATEGORY 3B–3 Upper High School Women

1. Hannah Ramsbottom (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

2. Kaitlin Burton (H) from the studio of Christina Fleming

3. Ava Stevenson (H) from the studio of Brian Nedvin

Honors

    Carly Titus from the studio of Ellen Fisher Petko

    Grace Templeton from the studio of Ann Stewart

    Azariah Boyd from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

    Morgan Royal-Hartman from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Cynthia Hu from the studio of Peggy McNulty

    Natalie McGeachy from the studio of Janette Ogg

    Rachel Hall from the studio of Joan Jurenas

    Gemauria Fennell from the studio of Alan Fisher

CATEGORY 4A Lower High School Men

1. Stanley Oaks from the studio of Eric Hanson

2. Josh Lemons (H) from the studio of Nancy MacArthur Smith

3. Nathan Hershberger (H) from the studio of Amy Jo Asbury

CATEGORY 4B Upper High School Men

1. Charles Wolfer (H) from the studio of Amy Ayre

1. Julio Aleman (H) from the studio of Randall Speer

3. Donte Thompson (H) from the studio of Alan Fisher

Honors

    Jaelin Mitchell from the studio of Alan Fisher

    Ian Pathak from the studio of Laura Halick

    Jaloen Ford from the studio of Lani Jacobson

CATEGORY 15 Adult Women

1. Seon Gyu Park (H) from the studio of Patricia Miller
2. Sarah Grace Fitzsimmons (H) from the studio of Patricia Miller
3. Taylor Simpson (H) from the studio of Joan Jurenas

Honors

    Ji Kim from the studio of Dorothy Maddison

    Jessica Foy from the studio of Kathleen Bell

    Leslie Harvey from the studio of Cara Cammaroto

    Marcia Espenshied from the studio of Peggy McNulty

    Rachel Abdella from the studio of Christina Fleming

    Hayley Kukulis from the studio of Dorothy Maddison

CATEGORY 16 Adult Men

1. Zhencong Chen (H) from the studio of Patricia Miller

CATEGORY 17 Adult Musical Theater Women

1. Nicole Daniels (H) from the studio of Eric Hanson

2. Cristina Kalinauskas (H) from the studio of Brian Nedvin

3. Jessica Foy (H) from the studio of Kathleen Foy

Honors

    Caitlyn Schillemat from the studio of Mackenzie Romriell

    Jennifer Levy from the studio of Peggy McNulty

    Sarah Riley from the studio of Donna Green

    Stephanie Melchor from the studio of Christina Fleming

CATEGORY 18 Adult Musical Theatre Men

1. Nicholas Martinez (H) from the studio of Mark Greenawalt

2. Finn Smyth from the studio of Amanda Culin

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