The Spohr Society

The Spohr Society of the United States of America


Founded in 2008 by Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert & Michael Leinert. 

Louis Spohr.
Painting by Albert Schindehütte, born 1939 in Kassel.

November 2018

Weidler Verlag, Berlin.
Hrsg.: Louis Spohr Musikzentrum Braunschweig,
in Zusammenarbeit mit der Internationalen Louis Spohr Gesellschaft e.V.,
der Braunschweigischen Louis-Spohr-Gesellschaft und der Spohr Society.

Auf literarischer Spurensuche in Louis Spohrs Klavierliedern.
Literarische Spurensuche-SpohrJahrbuch_2018.pdf

HANNS-WERNER HEISTER: Beethovens Kalauer-Kanon „Kühl, nicht lau“ für Kuhlau,
Stammbuch Kanons für Spohr von Hummel
und Weber sowie Kuhlaus „Comischer Canon“.

KARL TRAUGOTT GOLDBACH: Louis Spohrs Quartettverein
und andere musikalische Geselligkeiten in Kassel.

HANS KRAUSS: Louis Spohr und die Hausmusik.

KOLJA LESSING: Louis Spohrs Violinschule.
Eine unbekannte Bereicherung des Anfangsunterrichts.

KIM, JIN-AH / HAGELS, BERT (Hg.): Symphonie-Rezeption
in deutschsprachigen Periodika von 1798-50 (Hanns-Werner Heister).

JOACHIM KREMER / HEINRICH W. SCHWAB (Hg.): Das Amt des Hofkapellmeisters
um 1800 (Hanns-Werner Heister).

VOLKER TIMMERMANN: „… wie ein Mann mit dem Kochlöffel“ (David Koch).

Spohr-Bibliografie 1980-1999 und 2017.

Die Autoren dieses Bandes.


July 2018

Louis Spohr Symposium Braunschweig 2018
"Louis Spohr - Werk und Wirkung"
Die Rezeption der Streicherkammermusik im zeitgeschichtlichen Kontext
26.- 27. Oktober -Altstadtrathaus Braunschweig 

June 2018

24th International Louis-Spohr-Competition for voice
on June 21, 2018 in Kassel, Germany
Louis Spohr Foundation e.V.
Required repertoire:
Selected Lieder from Susan Owen-Leinert's & Michael Leinert's
first complete Louis-Spohr-Liededition in 12 vols.with the publisher Christoph Dohr, Cologne.

April 2018

James Dickenson, the first violinist of the Villiers Quartet, Resident Quartet at Oxford University
and Jameson Cooper, first violinist of the Euclid Quartet, USA,
have undertaken a project with NAXOS USA
to record all of Louis Spohr’s 19 Violin Duos,
including the early ones WoO 21 and 22 for the first time.
The first of these CD's is due out in July 2018.

Here is a short clip about the project:

December 2017

The first edition of the new SPOHR-JAHRBUCH 2017 !

Published by the Louis Spohr Musikzentrum Braunschweig, Germany -
in cooperation with the Spohr Society.
Included is a greeting and an article about Louis Spohr's forgotten operas
by Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert & Michael Leinert


in BERLIN, October 2017
Three different lectures about the Romantic composer Louis Spohr
       Prof. Susan-Owen-Leinert  (The University of Memphis)
      Michael Leinert  (Freelance Writer & Dramaturg)

 Spohr Society Newsletter  - October 2017

That Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert was on the road again
lecturing about the Romantic composer Louis Spohr is not really news.
Since coming to the University of Memphis in 2005, Louis Spohr has been her research topic and she has lectured
extensively in the USA and Germany over the years.
What made this tour special were the noble venues, all in Berlin.
And the whirlwind 3 different lectures (in German) presented in 4 days left her no time for jetlag.

 The first lecture on October 19th brought her to the beautiful Mendelssohn-Remise in the middle of the city of Berlin.
This former residence of the famous Mendelssohn family is now a museum.
The Mendelssohn Society of Berlin invited Owen-Leinert with her husband,
Michael Leinert to present a lecture regarding the delightful
and close friendship between Louis Spohr and Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy.
Not only were both composers well-known in Germany, they were both extremely popular in Great Britain.
With musical examples of their compositional works, the lecture brought to light
great insights into the musical world of the nineteenth century
and how composer/conductors supported each other, when the artistic temperaments matched!

On a personal note, this was a home coming for Owen-Leinert,
as the European part of her long operatic career began in Berlin.
Conductor Daniel Barenboim is the Artistic Consultant for the Mendelssohn Society Berlin and their various cultural activities.
He invited Susan Owen to the Staatsoper Berlin in 1993, thus affording her a giant step into the Wagnerian repertoire
with their productions of Der Ring des Nibelungen and Der Fliegende Hollaender.
The Chairman of the Mendelssohn Society of Berlin is also from her operatic history in this city.
 Andre Schmitz was the Artistic Director of the Deutsche Opera Berlin at the time of her
engagement there for performances of Isolde (Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde) in 2001.

Stig Andersen  Susan Owen
 Tristan und Isolde
   Deutsche Oper Berlin 2001

One of the largest and most prestigious music conservatories in Germany
is the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin.
Prof. Claus Unzen is the head of the Voice and Opera Department.
    He invited the Leinerts to lecture on the operatic compositions of Louis Spohr on October 21st.
        This lecture guided the students and other guests through the 10 operas of Louis Spohr with musical examples.
          In the audience was their conductor-friend who was responsible for many of the recordings used:
Christian Fröhlich.


He has promoted the works of Louis Spohr for years, recording his operas and
violin concerti with various orchestras and soloists throughout Europe
After this lecture the number one question to Owen-Leinert was
 “Why do we hear the same operas over and over again in the opera houses, when there are so many other good choices,
as the ones that you introduced us to today?”
  Her answer is simple. The audiences of the world can help make such changes
 by making their wishes known to the artistic administrations of theaters and concert hall.
             It won’t happen overnight, but just since she has been an active researcher
 and promoter of Spohr’s works, there has been progress in
    reintroducing his music into various performing venues.
The third and final lecture was given on October 22nd at the wonderful Berlin Museum of Musical Instruments
which is a part of the Kulturforum.
This area of Berlin is magical, with several different museums, galleries,
and a concert hall all within walking distance of each other.
Together with a few nice cafes and shops, it is well worth a visit.
                  Director Dr. Thomas Ertelt and Prof. Dr. Heinz von Loesch from the department of music theory and music history
                    at the State Institute for Music Research Berlin invited the team
                                                                        to present a lecture at this lovely Museum of Musical Instruments.
This presentation regarded their edition of the complete Lieder (songs) of Louis Spohr,
published in 2011 with the Dohr Publishing Co. in Cologne.
This 12-volume collection of over 110 songs has been well-received by musicians and musicologists alike.
Several wonderful critical analyses have been written in magazines in Germany, England and the United States of America,
praising the precise research, professional editing and attractive layout of the publication.
This lecture was accompanied by musical examples as well as an extensive exhibit of manuscripts
and research documents used for the publication.
Of course the 12 volumes were on display and members of the audience wanted to purchase them right off the exhibit table! 

Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy                                      Louis Spohr

"Mit inniger Hochachtung und Freundschaft"

 A  lecture about the friendship between the two composers
Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy and Louis Spohr, regarding their vocal works
especially  their oratorios  in England and Germany.

Prof. Susan Owen:
Lecture about the friendship between
Louis Spohr and Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy
in the Mendelssohn-Remise in Berlin.

Die persönliche und berufliche Beziehung der Komponisten-Kollegen Louis Spohr und Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy.
Mit einem Kapitel über das gespaltene Verhältnis Richard Wagners zu den beiden Freunden Spohr und Mendelssohn.
Der Vortrag stellt den aufschlussreichen Briefwechsel der Beiden in den Mittelpunkt -
während der  Entstehungszeit ihrer grossen Oratorien.
Mit musikalischen Beispielen.

   Thursday, October 19, 2017 7:00 pm at the Mendelssohn-Remise
Jägerstrasse 51,  10117 Berlin, Germany.
Photo: After the lecture - Susan Owen-Leinert,
Dr. Thomas Lackmann, chairman of the Mendelssohn-Society Berlin,
and Michael Leinert.

The Mendelssohn - Remise, Jaegerstr. 51 in Berlin       -       where our lecture about the friendship of Spohr & Mendelssohn took place.


"Seid mir gegrüsst, ihr theuren Hallen!
An expedition through the forgotten operas by Louis Spohr
With musical examples.
Saturday, October 21, 2017  4:00 pm
at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler Berlin
Studiosaal, Charlottenstraße 55.

Louis Spohr composed ten operas. Witches and sorcerers,
crusaders and mountain spirits, lovers and schemers,
owl-queens and alchemists are among the characters brought to life.
From days of long ago, on landscapes steeped in legend,
to India, Spain, Flanders, Germany, Italy and Turkey, we are guided on this expedition
of operas by the composer Louis Spohr.
Accompanied by famous singers, orchestras and conductors, numerous musical examples
will be presented. Often his operas deal with controversial subjects, such as for example
in 'Jessonda' the issue of widow-burning in India.
The lecture about Spohr's music theater illuminates at the same time
a forgotten portion of opera history:  the composer, along side Carl Maria von Weber,
can be designated without a doubt, an innovator of the Romantic music drama.
To delve into the content and form of opera, this 'impossible art',
was always a challenge for Louis Spohr, who although self-critical,
met the challenge with great passion and intensity.

Louis Spohr: FAUST.  Italian Version in 3 acts for London, 1852.
Comissioned by Queen Victoria of Great Britain.
Scene from Spohr's "Faust" at the Royal Italian opera, London -
published with The Illustrated London News - Supplement, 31 July 1852.

                   Photo: Musikhochschule Hanns Eisler, Charlottenstr.55 in Berlin.                    


"Nur nicht lesen - immer singen" (Goethe, An Lina)

A lecture about our exciting Louis Spohr Lieder research and the first complete edition 
     of his Klavierlieder in 12 vols. with the music publisher Dohr, Cologne.

Vortrag über die spannende Forschungs- und Editionsarbeit der Herausgeber  für die erste, kritische Gesamtausgabe
der Klavierlieder von Louis Spohr in 12 Vols. Mit musikalischen Beispielen.  Über einen Zeitraum von mehr als 50 Jahren
hat sich Spohr mit der Kunstform des Liedes auseinandergesetzt. Seine kompositorische Experimentierfreude
ist auch in seinen Liedkompositionen festzustellen. Umso erstaunlicher ist es, dass das 'Kapitel Spohr' im Kunstlied des 19. Jahrhunderts
von der Musikgeschichte und den Liedforschern bisher weitgehend vernachlässigt worden ist.

     Sunday, October 22, 2017 - 11:00 am  at the Musikinstrumenten-Museum Berlin
     (The Musical Instrument Museum),  located at the Kulturforum on   
     Tiergartenstrasse; Ben-Gurion-Strasse, 10785 Berlin, Germany.

Photos: Our Spohr-Exhibition with people of the audience after the lecture.
Michael Leinert with examples from a first print
of the forgotten Spohr song "Wenn sich zwei Herzen finden"
 as "gefaltete Musikbeilage" in  Deutscher Musenalmach 1852.

    Department of Music Theory and Music History.
Staatliches Institut fuer Musikforschung PK. Instituts-Direktor Dr. Thomas Ertelt.
Abteilung: Musiktheorie und Musikgeschichte, Prof. Dr. Heinz von Loesch.

Photos (Musikinstrumenten-Museum): Andreas Praefke


Spohrs Liederzyklus "1000 und ein Tag im Orient"
beim "Divan of Song" von Burkhard Kehring!


Charles Baugniet: L'ANALYSE. Berlioz and his friends 1853.

Souvenir of the Musical Union (Ninth Season). From left to right:
Bazzani, H. Blagrov, Goffrie, J. Blumenthal, Henri Vieuxtemps (with his violin), Lazarus, S. Pratten, Jarrett,
Ferdinand Hiller, Barret, Baumann, Peter J. Lindpaintner,
Louis Spohr (with his musical score), Molique, Hector Berlioz, John Ella (standing behind Berlioz).
Lithograph of musicians who took part in the concerts of John Ella's Musical Union during the 1853 season.

Ludwig van Beethoven dedicated his Canon for 3 voices "Kurz ist der Schmerz" WoO 166
 (words by Friedrich Schiller from his tragedy "Die Jungfrau von Orleans")
to his friend Louis Spohr who was at this time Music Director in Vienna (1813-1815)
at the "Theater an der Wien". The date of Beethoven's dedication: March 3, 1815:
„Mögen Sie doch, lieber Spohr, überall wo sie wahre Kunst und wahre Künstler finden,
gerne meiner gedenken, ihres Freundes Ludwig van Beethoven. Wien, am 3. März 1815.“

Beethoven: Canonanon Video Clip

An introduction to Louis Spohr's opera
by the Italian conductor and composer Dario Bisso Sabadin


L o u i s  S p o h r  in  F l o r i d a

October 20, 2015
Florida Atlantic University  - Boca Raton, FL 33431 
Lecture by Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert:

"LOUIS SPOHR - the forgotten master
and his songs"


on October 21, 2015
New World School of the Arts


November 14, 2014: Lecture in Hamburg
about the first Edition of Louis Spohr's Lieder.

'Nur nicht lesen! immer singen!'(Goethe, An Lina)

Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert und Michael Leinert,
von der Spohr Society
berichten über ihre Forschungs - und Editionsarbeit  für die erste, kritische
Gesamtausgabe der Klavierlieder von Louis Spohr in 12 Bänden.
Vortrag mit musikalischen Beispielen.

Veranstaltungsort:  Theater im Zimmer, Alsterchaussee 30, 20149 Hamburg.
Freitag 14. November 2014. Beginn 13:00 Uhr. Eintritt frei. Gäste willkommen.
Eine Veranstalung der Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hamburg (HfMT).

Louis Spohr (1784 - 1859) ist als Liedkomponist nahezu vergessen.
Ausser den Sechs Deutschen Liedern op. 103, den sogenannten 'Klarinettenliedern', gibt es heute nur wenige
Liedkompositionen, die Aufnahme in Liederabende und Konzert-Programme gefunden haben.
Über einen Zeitraum von mehr als 50 Jahren hat sich Spohr mit der Kunstform des Liedes
auseinandergesetzt. Seine kompositorische Experimentierfreude ist auch in seinen Liedkompositionen festzustellen.
Umso erstaunlicher ist es, dass das 'Kapitel Spohr' im Kunstlied des 19. Jahrhunderts von der Musikgeschichte
und den Liedforschern bisher weitgehend vernachlässigt worden ist.
Einspielungen von Spohr-Liedern mit berühmten Interpreten werden den Vortrag ergänzen.

Prof. Burkard Kehring, Librarian Silke Brose, Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert and Michael Leinert.
The Spohr Society of the United States of America (President Prof. Owen-Leinert)
donated the first critical Edition of Louis Spohr's Lieder in 12 volumes
to the library of the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Hamburg on November 14, 2014

              after the lecture about Louis Spohr's Lieder.


Friday, September 27th, 2013, 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm
 Bruno Walter Auditoriu
Amsterdam Ave. and 65th St. Entrance

Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert
gave a lecture presentation with musical examples:
A Forgotten Master - the  romantic composer Louis Spohr louis-spohr

The Complete Edition in 12 vols. is available at the NYPL for the Perming Arts. Call No.: JMG 14-80


Valerie Girard, New York
Works at Private Voice Studio - Opera & Concert Soloist
Was a wonderful and interesting presentation. Thank you!

George Boziwick, Chief, Music Division
The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts
40 Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY 10023-7498

It was a pleasure to meet you both and to host such a terrific program.
I too received great feedback from members of the audience.

Hermann Leptz, New York
Current Archivist and Historian of Manhattan School of Music.
Former assistant archivist of the New York Philharmonic.
Editor of Moravian music. Lyric Baritone. Conductor.
"It was truly a pleasure to meet you both and hear that wonderful lecture on Louis Spohr.
You must come back again and go into detail on his life and impact on other composers." 

Recently received in West Palm Beach, Florida, the news of the successful publication
has grown in popularity. Following the lectures that the editors Susan Owen-Leinert & Michael Leinert
 have presented in various German cities, they are excited to be invited
to speak about this important German Romantic composer now in the United States.

    Louis Spohr in San Francisco

Louis Spohr's >Tristan Chords< and Leitmotivs
February 7, 2009
n her talk, Professor Susan Owen-Leinert (The University of Memphis, Tennessee)
presents an exciting musical relationship:
the influence of Louis Spohr (1784 - 1859) on the music of Richard Wagner.
Her experience as a successful Wagnerian
soprano is a fundamental element in Owen-Leinert's research for this lecture,
which is accompanied with unique musical
examples.  Professor Owen-Leinert is a passionate teacher of voice at the
University of Memphis and the President of the
Louis Spohr Society of the United States of America.
She is currently editing the first complete edition of the Lieder of Louis Spohr in 12 vols.
for the German publisher Dohr Verlag in Cologne. 
Professor Owen-Leinert will take us into the world of Spohr and help us learn more
about this important friend and champion of Richard Wagner.  


More about our

Spohr Lecture

Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Städtisches Museum in Braunschweig, Germany.

The First Complete Edition of  Spohr's  Lieder (12 vols.)
    for one or two voices and piano,
edited by Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert
and Michael Leinert
Publisher:  Verlag Christoph Dohr, Cologne.


 The complete edition in 12 vols. with 111 songs is now available    
     The contents of the complete edition (12 Vols.) as pdf file                                                  
Vol. 6: Sechs deutsche Lieder op. 103 (Sopran, Klarinette, Piano).
Partitur mit beiliegender Klarinetten-Stimme. E.D. 29956
Now available: alternative with violin part E.D. 12610

Magazin für klassische Musik und Musikwissenschaft
Redaktion: Hochschule für Musik FRANZ LISZT Weimar
Institut für Musikwissenschaft Weimar-Jena

Enthusiastic review by  Ferdinand von Bothmer on page 273-275
about the SPOHR LIED EDITION in 12 vols.
DIE TONKUNST_Review_Spohr_Liededition.pdf

Translated from the German, highlights of this lengthy review are summarized below.

'The inspiring introductions, concise in their content and writing style are impressive and detailed...
including important literary facts that are helpful to the singer.'
'The prefaces contain information of superior worth about each individual song.'
'Among such professional publications currently printed,
this edition is truly a most magnificent example supplying pertinent information
in a scholarly correct, easy to understand and refreshingly lively manner.'


The Louis Spohr Lied Edition.
A review by Keith Warsop.

In:  Spohr Journal no. 39, 2012. Page 14 – 16. The Spohr Society of Great Britain


  Review of the first complete SPOHR LIED EDITION (12 vols.)
in the British music magazine THE SINGER June/July 2011


   'An example of the efforts made to rehabilitate
Spohr is a new first scholarly Lied Edition....
   more than 100 songs are included...
the critical commentary on each number is excellent'.


Review by Sue Anderson,
editor of the British AOTOS Journal SINGING
The Association of Teachers of Singing.
Issue 63 Autumn 2012


Mit steigender Leidenschaft, wehmuüig
Romantische Literatur für Singstimmen und Klavier

 Rezension in der Neuen Musikzeitung 5/2012

Louis Spohr (1784 - 1859): Lied Edition. Gesamtausgabe der ein- und zweistimmigen Lieder in 12 Bänden,
Band 1, Deutsche Lieder op. 25 & op. 37,
Edition Dohr 29951 ISMN M-2020-1951-1; Band 11, Einzellieder II;
Edition Dohr 29961,
ISMN M-2020-1961-0, herausgegeben von Susan Owen-Leinert und Michael Leinert, Memphis/Tennessee

Louis Spohrs Klavierlied-Repertoire umfasst derzeit eine Sammlung von 105 Liedern, ohne Berücksichtigung seines Frühwerks.
Aus damaliger Sicht stilistisch experimentell, ist es von grossartiger Vielfalt und Ideenreichtum geprägt. Leider verlor die Internationale
Louis Spohr Gesellschaft e.V. ihren gesamten Nachlass durch Konfiszierung im Jahr 1933. Nun sind dankenswerterweise etliche der in der
früheren Gesamtausgabe des Louis Spohr-Forschers Clive Brown nicht enthaltenen Lieder wieder aus der Versenkung ausgegraben und
zum ersten Mal in der vorliegenden 12bändigen Ausgabe abgedruckt worden. Spohrs erstes gedrucktes Liederheft mit insgesamt
sechs Liedern op. 25 entstand im Jahr 1809 in Gotha. Sie sind mit einer Widmung an die Sängerin, Schauspielerin und Mätresse von
Carl August von Weimar, 'der Frau von Heigendorf geb. Jagemann in Weimar ergebenst zugeeignet' und, von ihr protegiert, in Hamburg
bei Boehme erschienen. Im 1. Band dieser Edition sind Opus 25 und weitere sechs deutsche Lieder op. 37 vom Entstehungsjahr 1815 enthalten.
Auf das 'Wiegenlied' op. 25,1 mit nachgetragenem sowie op. 37,4, einem Lied mit englischsprachigem Text ist im Anhang hingewiesen.
Gedichte von unterschiedlicher poetischer Qualitaet beflügelten Spohrs Phantasie zu hintergründig qualitätvoller Tondichtung. Vom einfachen
Kinderwiegenlied bis hin zur vollendeten Kunstform scheint einfühlsamer Sprachduktus, Semantik und daraus sich entwickelnde musikalische
Gestik der Fokus allen strukturellen kompositorischen Denkens zu sein. Exakte Tempoangaben sowie auch Vortragsangaben wie zum
Beispiel 'mit steigender Leidenschaft, wehmütig, ernste Bewegung' haben nicht nur Hinweischarakter. Einigen wenigen Gesängen sind
Soloinstrumente beigegeben: Klarinette, Horn oder Harfe. Die jedem einzelnen der 12 Bände vorangestellten allgemeinen Hinweise zur
Edition, Vorwort und der kritische Bericht (Deutsch und Englisch) tragen erheblich zum Werkverständnis bei, nicht zuletzt die ausführlichen
Liedkommentare. Der Blickwinkel auf Leben und Werk Louis Spohrs erhält mit dieser Gesamtausgabe neue Justierung, eine neue Farbe.

                                                                                                                                                                       Johanna Erbacher-Binder

The largest German music magazine, 'neue musik zeitung'
wrote a detailed, positive review in the May, 2012 issue about the first complete Louis Spohr Lied edition.
Johanna Erbacher-Binder describes Spohr's Lied compositions as 'magnificent', 'versatile' and 'rich with ideas'.
Concerning the edition by Susan Owen-Leinert and Michael Leinert she praises the prefaces, 
critical report and the detailed commentary as being 'very insightful'.
Her conclusion: 'With this complete edition, the life and work of Louis Spohr receive a new point of interest, a new color.'


A selection - withVideo Clips

Braunschweigische Louis-Spohr-Gesellschaft
Matthias Stanze, Praesident

Spohr-Museum Kassel
Dr. Karl-Traugott Goldbach

Internationale Louis Spohr Gesellschaft Kassel 
Foerderverein Louis-Spohr-Stiftung e.V.
Dr. Lorenz B. F. Becker

The Spohr Society of Great Britain
Prof. Clive Brown, Keith Warsop, Chris Tutt

More about SPOHR, his life, his works,
Discography, Video Clips etc.


Article in the Kassel newspaper HNA, October 17, 2011
'Grosstat für den Meister - Great Feat for the Master'
Susan Owen-Leinert and Michael Leinert presented the first complete & critical Edition of
Louis Spohr's Lieder at the SPOHR MUSEUM in Kassel, Germany.

Did Louis Spohr composed a 'vocalise' ?

The Spohr Society
 Prof. Susan Owen-Leinert,
 Michael Leinert
 P O Box 11508
 Memphis, TN 38111  USA

Phone: 901 337 1363  / Prof. Owen-Leinert @The University of Memphis

Academic consultant:
Dr. Wolfram Boder  Herkulesstr.31  
 D-34119 Kassel, Germany 

Our Office in Germany: 
Cornelia Krueger-Crull
 D - 22391 Hamburg

Webmaster: Susan Owen-Leinert 
Last update: March 26, 2019

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