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  Wednesday March 31st

DAILY CD REVIEWS - No other web-site offers as many new reviews as MusicWeb

Hoffnung Music Festivals 1956,58,61
$31 £19 World $33 £21 post free
This is a must for all Hoffnung enthusiasts.
Purchase here    see review

Hoffnung - A Last Encore
On 2 CDs lasting 1 hour 45min, this contains all the recordings of Hoffnung preserved in the BBC archives. They include the famous and hilariously funny Bricklayer story. $22 £14 post free world-wide Purchase

Music Books for sale Elgar's Oratorios, Michael Tippet, Malcolm Arnold,etc.

Latest issues in EMI's Great Recordings of the Century

MusicWeb SPECIAL OFFER From Stock: ERIK CHISHOLM Piano Music Murray McLachlan Piano. Olympia OCD 639 £10 P&P free Worldwide. See review for how to purchase.

MusicWeb can now offer you the
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The Lyrita Catalogue
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Redcliffe Recordings - a small British label owned by Francis Routh

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ACD130 KILAR Lament, September Symphony Review
ACD078 Les Chemins d'Amour F. Poulenc, C. Debussy, H. Duparc
SPECIAL OFFER BEETHOVEN Symphonies 1-9, Egmont, Leonora 3 overtures.The Warsaw Philharmonic -
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MusicWeb recommended recordings 2004

TREVOR HOLD (1939 - 2004): Obituary By Lewis Foreman

The Golden Age of Singing by Bernard Jacobson


THE HISTORY OF MUSIC 1. Earliest times to the Renaissance Dr David C F Wright

Elliott Carter at 95 by John Warnaby.

John Warnaby in conversation with Brian Ferneyhough about Shadowtime, an opera in 7 scenes

Christoph Eschenbach in interview with Bernard Jacobson

Pitch Variation in the Callas Tosca - a lively debate

JOHN FOULDS by Malcolm Macdonald - preconcert talk


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Myer Fredman The Drama of Opera. Exotic and Irrational Entertainment 2003 Sussex Academic Press ISBN 1-903900-50-6 146 pages £15.95 [RH]

A useful little book introducing the bewildering world of opera and full of good sense. … see Full Review


UNEASY LISTENING - A caricature guide to 20th century composers
by John Minnion
109pp Paperback ISBN 0-9544499 1 6 [RB]

This is wonderfully well done as a book of illustrations. It tells us something of the psychology of the composer in each case and does so wittily and not without taking a few dangerous corners. ... see Full Review


William ALWYN (1905-1985) Concerto Grosso No. 2 in G (1948) [15’27]. Autumn Legend for Cor anglais and String Orchestraa (1954) [12’18]. Lyra Angelicab (Concerto for Harp and String Orchestra) (1953/4) [31’29] aGeoffrey Browne (cor anglais); bOsian Ellis (harp) London Philharmonic Orchestra/William Alwyn. No rec. info given. ADD LYRITA RECORDED EDITION SRCD230 [59’17] [JW]

Of all the Alwyn discs from Lyrita, this is surely the most special. … see Full Review

William BLANK (b.1957) Trio à cordes (1997) [18.28] Trio Contrechamps: Isabelle Magneat, v; Ruth Killius, vla; Daniel Haefliger, vc. Recorded live by Radio Suisse Romande in Geneva, 14 March 1998 Anacrousis pour percussion solo (2001) [18.47] Michael Tschamper, percussion Recorded in Geneva, Switzerland, 15 July 2002 Cris pour piano et ensemble (1999) [21.05] David Lively, Piano; Ensemble Contrechamps/William Blank. Recorded live at Maison de la Radio, Geneva, Swizerland, 2 April 2000 Ebbe(n) pour grand orchestra (2000) [19.07] Orchestre de la Suisse Romande/Fabio Luisi Recorded live in Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland, 11 October 2001 Notes in Français, Deutsch, English. Photo of composer and artists. Co-production of Radio Suisse Romande and Espace 2 MUSIQUES GRAMMONT PORTRAIT MGB CTS-M 79 [77.17] [PSh]

Very fine music by an unfamiliar name, but one that will most likely become more familiar to all of us in the near future ... see Full Review

Samuel COLERIDGE-TAYLOR (1875-1912) Violin Concerto in G minor Op. 80 (1911) [31:25] * Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Violin Concerto in A minor Op. 53 (1882) [31:02] Philippe Graffin, violin Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra/Michael Hankinson * world premiere recording rec. studio, 19, 23 Oct 2003 (Coleridge-Taylor), live at dress rehearsal and concert 17 Oct 2003 (Dvořák), Linder Auditorium, University of the Witwatersrand Education Campus, Johannesburg, South Africa. DDD AVIE AV 0044 [62:43] [RB]

Powerfully memorable store of whistleable tunes sweetly sung and set down by Avie .... see Full Review

George Frideric HANDEL (1685-1759) Trio Sonatas op. 2 Sonata in g minor, op. 2, 6* (HWV 391) [09:09] Sonata in F, op. 2, 4* (HWV 389) [12:02] Sonata in g minor, op. 2, 5* (HWV 390) [10:47] Sonata in b minor, op. 2, 1** (HWV 386b) [11:29] Sonata in g minor, op. 2, 2* (HWV 387) [10:25] Sonata in B flat, op. 2, 3* (HWV 388) [11:14] Sonnerie: Monica Huggett, Emilia Benjamin*, violin; Joseph Crouch, cello; Matthew Halls, harpsichord, organ; Wilbert Hazelzet**, transverse flute Recorded October 2002 at Saint Silas Church, Kentish Town, London, UK. DDD AVIE AV0033 [65:56] [JV]

I strongly recommend this excellent performance of some of Handel’s greatest chamber music ... see Full Review

Jean-Philippe RAMEAU (1683-1764) Platée Paul Agnew (Platée) Mireille Delunsch (La Folie / Thalie) Yann Beuron (Thespis / Mercure) Vincent Le Texier (Jupiter) Doris Lamprecht (Junon) Laurent Naouri (Cithéron, un Satyre) Valérie Gabail (L’Amour / Clarine) Franck Leguerinel (Momus) Les Musiciens du Louvre-Grenoble/Marc Minkowski Choreography: Laura Scozzi Rec: February 2002, Opéra National de Paris au Palais Garnier Sound format: Dolby Digital 5.0, DTS 5.0, LPCM stereo Subtitle languages: GB, D, F, ES, IT Picture format: 16:9 and 4:3 Picture standard: PAL Region code: 2 TDK DV-OPPLT [150 mins] [KM]

I cannot praise this DVD enough - the music, singing, and performances are impeccable. ... see Full Review

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Winterreise Matthias Goerne (baritone) Alfred Brendel (piano)8 and 10 October 2003 (Live concerts) Wigmore Hall, London DECCA CLASSICS 467 092-2 [75.32] [ME]

This performance is as close to perfection as any human creation can possibly be. ... see Full Review

Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856) The Four Symphonies Symphony No. 1 Spring (1841) [30.40] Symphony No. 2 (1846) [34.38] Symphony No. 3 Rhenish (1850) [31.51] Symphony No. 4 (1841 rev. 1851) [29.27] Staatskapelle Berlin/Daniel Barenboim rec. 12-14 March 2003, Studio 1 NLG, Berlin. DDD TELDEC CLASSICS 2564 61179-2 2 [72.39+67.14] [JPh]

Very, very attractive, and played superbly. ... see Full Review

Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949):
Der Rosenkavalier - opera in three acts libretto by Hugo von Hofmannsthal The Feldmarschallin, Princess Werdenberg: Maria Reining (soprano) Baron Ochs auf Lerchenau: Jaro Prohaska (baritone) Octavian: Jarmila Novotná (soprano) Herr von Faninal: Georg Hann (baritone) Sophie, his daughter: Hilde Güden (soprano) Marianne, Sophie’s duenna: Stefanie Holeschofsky (soprano) Valzacchi, an intriguer: Peter Klein (tenor) Annina, his partner: Dagmar Hermann (contralto) The Major-Domo to the Feldmarschallin: William Wernigk (tenor) An Attorney: Alfred Muzzarelli (bass) An Italian Singer: Helge Rosvaenge (tenor) Police Inspector: Georg Monthy (bass) Innkeeper: William Wernigk (tenor) Choir of the Vienna State Opera Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/George Szell Recorded by Sendergruppe "Rotweissrot" at a performance in the Festspielhaus, Salzburg 29 August 1949 (Archive of Austrian Radio ORF) Der Rosenkavalier: excerpts Excerpts from Act 1: Introduction [3’04"]; "Wie du warst! Wie du bist!" [3’45"]; "Warum ist Tag?" [4’31"]; "Der Feldmarschall sitzt im krowatischen Wald…" [6’32"]; "Da geht er hin…"[4’27"]; "Ach, du bist wieder da!" [1’59"]; "Die Zeit, die ist ein sonderbar Ding." [10’28"] Excerpts from Act 2: "im dieser feierlichen stunde…" [3’21"]; "Mir ist die Ehre widerfahren…" [7’56"]; "Wart, i hau’ dich z’samm…" [6’41"] Excerpts from Act 3: "Weiss bereits nicht…" [5’32"]; "Mein Gott, es war nicht mehr als eine Farce." [6’30"]; "Marie Theres’!" [8’31"]; "Ist ein Traum, kann nicht wirklich sein…" [3’01"] The Feldmarschallin, Princess Werdenberg; Lotte Lehmann (soprano) Baron Ochs auf Lerchenau: Richard Mayr (baritone) Octavian: Maria Olszewska (soprano) Herr von Faninal: Victor Madin (baritone) Sophie, his daughter: Elisabeth Schumann (soprano) Marianne, Sophie’s duenna: Anne Michalsky (soprano) Valzacchi, an intriguer: Hermann Gallos (tenor) Annina, his partner: Bella Paalen (contralto) Choir of the Vienna State Opera Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Robert Heger Recorded in the Konzerthaus, Vienna 20-24 September 1933 Source: HMV DB2060/72 Matrix: 2WX581/606 ANDANTE AND 3985 [4 CDs: 65’53"+53’55"+54’56"+76’18"] [JQ]

Recommended wholeheartedly to all who love the music of Richard Strauss and this wonderful opera in particular ... a marvellous, human and glorious score ... see Full Review

William Brocklesby WORDSWORTH (1908-1988) Symphonies: No. 2 in D, Op. 34 (1947/8) [43’45]; No. 3 in C, Op. 48 (1948) [27’20]. London Philharmonic Orchestra/Nicholas Braithwaite. No rec. info given. DDD LYRITA RECORDED EDITION SRCD207 [71’05] [CC]

The performances are eloquent in the extreme and represent a most persuasive document. Much of this music is either lively or lovely (sometimes both) … Do try to hear this disc. … see Full Review

Nancy Ambrose King plays Oboe Concertos Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Oboe Concerto in C K314 (1777) [20.49] Eugene GOOSSENS (1893-1962) Oboe Concerto in One Movement (1927) [11.52] Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958) Concerto for Oboe and Strings in A minor (1944) [18.32] Bohuslav MARTINŮ (1890-1959) Concerto for Oboe and Small Orchestra (1955) [17.18] Nancy Ambrose King (oboe) Janacek Philharmonic Orchestra/Jeremy Swerling rec. Vitkovice Dum Kulture, Ostrava, Czech Republic, 5-7 Sept 2000, 7 Jan 2002. DDD CALA CACD1035 [68.66] [RB]

This is the only collection of these works. For those having a taste for oboe and orchestra the choice is clear. All concerned can take a well-deserved bow for this one. Classic stuff. ... see Full Review

Puccini Passion Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) Le Villi ‘Se come voi piccini.’ Edgar ‘Adio mia dolce’ Manon Lescaut ‘Il quelle trine morbide’; ‘Sola, perduta, abbandonata’ La Boheme ‘Si, mi chiamano Mimi’. ‘Quando me’n vo’. ‘Donde lieta usci’ Tosca ‘Vissi d’arte’ Madama Butterfly ‘Un bel di vedremo’. ‘Che tua madre dovrà’. ‘Con onor muore’ La Rondine ‘Chi il bel sogno di Doretta’. ‘Ore dolci e divine’ Suor Angelica ‘Senza Mamma’ Gianni Schicchi ‘O mio babbino caro’ Turandot ‘Signore, ascolta’. ‘Tu che di gel sei cinta’ E l’uccellino Sole e amore Cheryl Barker (soprano) Orchestra Victoria/Richard Bonynge Rec. South Melbourne Town Hall, Australia MELBA MR-301085 [63:34] [RJF]

A highly skilled and committed singer who gives her all ... a very individual vibrant lyric soprano conveying much emotion satisfying a disc of this demanding repertoire as I have heard in a long time. ... see Full Review


Great Conductors of the 20th Century: Hermann Scherchen Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770 - 1827) Coriolan Overture, op. 62: (1807) [8.05] Vienna State Opera Orchestra (mono June 1954) Symphony no.8 in F, op. 93 (1812) [23.20] Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (mono 30 Sept 1954) Igor STRAVINSKY (1882 - 1971) L’Oiseau de Feu (1910): Suite (1919) [19.50] Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (mono September 1954) Arnold SCHOENBERG (1874 - 1951) Suite in the Old Style (G Major) for Strings (1935) [17.43] Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra (stereo 1 September 1959) Carl ORFF (1895 - 1982) after William BYRD (1543 - 1623) Entrata (1940) [8.35] Vienna State Opera Orchestra (stereo 17 November 1960) Emil Nikolaus von REZNIČEK (1860 - 1945) Donna Diana: Overture (1894) [5.38] Vienna State Opera Orchestra (stereo June 1957) Franz Joseph HAYDN (1732 - 1809) Symphony in G, Hob 1:100 "Military" (1794) [23.06] Vienna State Opera Orchestra (stereo July 1958) Johannes BRAHMS (1833 - 1897) Symphony no. 1 in c, op. 68 (1876) [44.14] Vienna State Opera Orchestra (mono October 1952) Vienna Recordings made in the Mozart-Saal, Konzerthaus, Vienna, Austria. (1952-60) British recordings made in the Walthamstow Town Hall, London, UK (1954) German radio recording made in Lankwitz Studio, Berlin, September 1959. Hermann Scherchen conducting
Recordings are monophonic except the Schoenberg, Byrd/Orff, Rezniček and Haydn. AAD EMI CLASSICS IMG ARTISTS 7243 5 75956 2 9 [78.26 + 73.23] [CH]

I don’t think you could doubt that a great conductor and an original, enquiring mind was in charge of every track here. ... see Full Review




Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Missa Solemnis, for soloists, chorus and orchestra Op. 123 Lori Phillips (soprano) Robynne Redmon (mezzo-soprano) James Taylor (tenor) Jay Baylon (bass-baritone) Mary Kathryn van Osdale (violin) Nashville Symphony Orchestra and Chorus/Kenneth Schermerhorn Recorded at the Ingram Hall, Blair School of Music, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, USA, 21-22 April 2003. DDD NAXOS 8.557060 [77:11] [MC]

Naxos have struck gold with this release. A truly awe-inspiring performance. Outstanding! ... see Full Review

Anton BRUCKNER (1824 - 1896) Symphony No. 3 in D minor Wagner Symphony (1877) Adagio from Symphony No. 3 in D minor (1876) Symphony No. 3 in D minor (1889) New Philharmonic Orchestra of Westphalia/Johannes Wildner.recorded in the Festspielhaus Recklinghausen, Germany, October 2001 - January 2002. DDD NAXOS 8.555928-29 [127’29"] [JPh]

Superb performances of the different versions … many will enjoy these immensely … Well done Naxos, give us more like this! … see Full Review

Paul CRESTON (1906-1985) Toccata Op. 68 (1957) [13:42] Symphony No. 5 Op. 64 (1955) [25:34] Out of the Cradle Op. 5 (1932) [10:32] Partita Op. 12 (1935) [16:35] Invocation and Dance Op. 58 (1953) [13:17] Scott Goff (flute) Ilkka Talvi (violin) Seattle Symphony Orchestra/Gerard Schwarz Rec. Seattle Center Opera House, 1991-1992 NAXOS 8.559153 [79:42] [RB]

A cracking disc - combining exuberant high optimism with triumphantly lyrical tenderness. Creston’s generosity of spirit sings its lyrical heart out … see Full Review

Arthur Grumiaux - Historic Philips Recordings 1953-1962 Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Violin Concerto No. 1 in B flat major K207 Violin Concerto No. 2 in D major K211 Arthur Grumiaux (violin) Vienna Symphony Orchestra/Bernhard Paumgartner, recorded 1954-55 Violin Concerto No. 3 in G major K216 Violin Concerto No. 4 in D major K218 Arthur Grumiaux (violin) Vienna Symphony Orchestra/Rudolf Moralt, recorded 1953 Violin Concerto No. 5 in A major K219 Violin Concerto in D major K271i Arthur Grumiaux (violin) Vienna Symphony Orchestra/Bernhard Paumgartner, recorded 1954 Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Violin Sonata in G minor Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Violin Sonata in G major, Pièce en forme de Habanera arr. Catherine Gabriel FAURÉ (1845-1924) Violin Sonata No. 1 in A major Op. 13, Les Berceaux Op.23 No. 1 Pablo de SARASATE (1844-1908) Zigeunerweisen Op. 20 Joseph-Hector FIOCCO (1703-1741) Allegro from Pièces de Clavecin Op. 1 arr. H. Bent and N. O’Neill Enrique GRANADOS (1867-1916) Andaluza (Danzas Españolas Op. 37 No. 5) arr. Kreisler Isaac ALBÉNIZ (1860-1909) Tango Op. 165 No.2 arr. Kreisler Arthur Grumiaux (violin) István Hajdu (piano) Recorded 1962 Edouard LALO (1823-1892) Symphonie Espagnole in D minor Op. 21 Ernest CHAUSSON (1855-1899) Poème Op.25 Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Tzigane Camille SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921) Introduction et Rondo Capriccioso Op.28 Havanaise Op.38 Arthur Grumiaux (violin)/Orchestre des Concerts Lamoureux/Jean Fournet, recorded 1954 and 1956 Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Violin Concerto in E minor Op.64 Arthur Grumiaux (violin) Vienna Symphony Orchestra/Rudolf Moralt, recorded 1954 Niccolò PAGANINI (1782-1840) Violin Concerto No.4 in D minor
Arthur Grumiaux (violin)/Orchestre des Concerts Lamoureux/Franco Gallini, recorded 1954 I Palpiti Op.13 arr. Kreisler Le Streghe Op.8 arr. Kreisler Arthur Grumiaux (violin) Riccardo Castagnone (piano) Recorded 1958 PHILIPS ORIGINAL MASTERS LIMITED EDITION 473 104-2 [5 CDs 64.09 + 70.19 + 76.48 + 71.04 + 76.20] [JW]

I have little but praise for this elegantly designed and life-enhancing collection. A boon to Grumiaux’s admirers opening up compelling perspectives on his subtle but flexible music making. … see Full Review

Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Die sieben letzten Worte unseres Erlosers am Kreuze, H.XX: 2 (1786) (The Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross) - oratorio for soloists, chorus and orchestra Arnold Schoenberg Choir Concentus musicus Wien/Nikolaus Harnoncourt Recorded at the Casino Zogernitz, Vienna, Austria in October 1990, DDD WARNER CLASSICS ELATUS 2564 60808-2 [62:43] [MC]

This Elatus release is one of the finest recordings of any choral works in the catalogues. Indispensable Haydn, indispensable music! ... see Full Review

Olivier MESSIAEN (1908-1992) La Transfiguration de Notre Seigneur Jésus-Christ (1965-1969) Yvonne Loriod, piano Arturo Muruzabal, cello Martine van der Loo, flute Harmen de Boer, clarinet Peter Prommel, marimba Ruud Stotÿn, vibraphone Henk de Vlieger, xylorimba Ludwig van Gijsegem, tenor Reiner Holthaus, baritone Choir of the BRT, Brussels Groot Omroepkoor and the Radio Symphonie Orkest, Hilversum/Reinbert de Leeuw Recorded live, Great Hall, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, 29 June 1991. DDD NAÏVE - DISQUES MONTAIGNE MO 782170 [2CDs: 100:01] [KS]

I encourage all lovers of music, regardless of experience or knowledge, to invest in this recording - it is bargain price. Opportunities to hear this music very rare; to walk away not having experienced it at all would be a loss indeed. ... see Full Review

John TAVENER (b.1944) - A Portrait CD1 In Alium – Section A (1968) To a Child Dancing in the Wind (1983) - Movement 1: He wishes for the Cloths of Heaven The Lamb (1982); The Tyger (1987) Ikon of Light (1984): Movement 1: FOS 1, DOXA Movement 2: Piu Intensita, Mandelion for organ (1981) (extract) Chant for guitar (extract) (1984) Ikon of St. Cuthbert of Lindisfarne (extract) The Protecting Veil (1989), Section 1 Mary of Egypt (1991) – Act III: Bless Duet, Akhmatova Songs, Diódia for string quartet (1997) (extracts) Song for Athene (1993) CD2 Zodiacs for piano (1997) Prayer of the Heart (1999) Ikon of Eros (2000): Movement 2: Eρωη (Eros) Mother and Child (2002) (extract) John Tavener Reflects………A Recorded Interview NAXOS 8.558152-53 [79:31+75:55] [GPJ]

Of incalculable value to those wanting to come to terms with this sometimes perplexing yet undeniably significant figure in the world of modern music. … see Full Review

Evgeny Kissin in Concert Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor Op. 23 St. Petersburg Academic Symphony Orchestra/Valery Gergiev Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Concerto for Piano, Trumpet and Orchestra in C minor Op. 35 Bernard Soustrot, trumpet; St. Petersburg Chamber Orchestra/Vladimir Spivakov Recorded 30 March 1987 (Tchaikovsky) 26 December 1988 (Shostakovich) Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor Op. 11 Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor Op. 21 Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra/Dmitri Kitaenko [Recorded ?27 March 1984] Franz LISZT (1811-1886) Waldesrauschen La Leggierezza Liebestraum No. 3 in A flat major Hungarian Rhapsody No. 12 in C sharp minor Etude d’exécution transcendante No. 10 in F minor "Appassionata" Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856) Études symphoniques Op. 13 Abegg Variations Op. 1 Widmung (Transcription Franz Liszt) Recorded 23 May 1983 and 26 February 1989 Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Waltz No. 14 in E minor Op. Posth. Mazurka in F minor Op. 63 No. 2 Mazurka in D flat major Op. 30 No. 3 Mazurka in B flat minor Op. 24 No. 4 Mazurka in F minor Op. 68 No. 4 Mazurka in C sharp minor Op. 50 No. 3 Fantasie in F minor Op. 49 Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor Op. 58 Recorded 23 May 1984 and 26 February 1989 Evgeny Kissin (piano) BRILLIANT CLASSICS 92118 [4 CDs 56.28+63.05+65.45+56.21] [RH]

A testament to some remarkable pianism, live recordings made of Kissin in his teens, including the stupendous Chopin piano concertos recorded when he was 12. ... see Full Review



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