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  Valerie Mastersrs
Daughter of Sarah (Sally) Sassienie & Jacob Muster

Well Known Singer

Valerie Masters had many UK hit songs and starred in various UK television programmes including the Paul Squires variety shows and in the smash hit seventies war time drama, Secret Army.

Valerie sang backing songs for television, film and commercials, her most famous being: Come Alive you’re In The Pepsi Generation, for Pepsi Cola.

Valerie also sang live on stage in theatres across the world, including the Savoy theatre, London and at The Talk Of The Town in London's West End.



Photo 1: Pianist Dick Katz was sitting in the audience of a London theatre when he heard Valerie Masters sing. He met her, dated her and became Valerie`s manager. Dick Katz bought Valerie a Ł600 engagement ring, then Valerie Masters took over as boss and they were married.

Photo 2: This is Valerie Masters, who will be seen on television next Tuesday.  (East End Advertiser - Friday, May 29, 1959).


Photos 1 & 2: Stills taken from the UK World War 2 drama series: Secret Army


Valerie Masters and the Ray Ellington Band - England 1958


Valerie Masters - Savoy Theatre London 1985



Video: Excerpts from Secret Army, series 3, episode Bridgehead (1979) - Starring Valerie Masters



Video: Valerie Masters backing singer for this 1960s Pepsi commercial




Branch one


Richard (Dick) Katz

Late husband of Valerie Masters


Escaped his native Austria just prior to the German Nazi occupation during the 1930s. Was a highly successful London theatrical agent and piano player. Was part of the Ray Ellington band quartet. Played piano on many UK TV shows including the 1950s/1960s English comedy series, the Goon shows.

Dick Katz had a reputation for being a kind and generous man, a wonderful husband, father, uncle and friend.  He could suddenly turn up within a moment’s notice and take everyone out to a top rated west end of London restaurant as his treat. This was the larger than life, magical personality of Richard (Dick) Katz.

Dick Katz was a hugely underrated pianist with a penchant for Duke Ellington voicings and introductions

Dick Katz, wedding day 1961


Video:  This clip was taken from the 1966 Goon show reunion.

Dick Katz on piano and from left front: Peter Sellers, Ray Ellington, Sir Harry Secombe and Spike Milligan.



The Ray Ellington band quartet specialised in attractive vocals and occasional novelty songs, but it was all underpinned by an infectious beat and fine solos all round



The Ray Ellington quartet

Photo 1: From top - Coleridge Goode, Dick Katz, Lauderic Caton & Ray Ellington.

Photo 2: Signatures of the band members.


In Memory Of Dick Katz


Branch one, husband

Samuel Barnett

Great grandson of
Julia Sasiene and Lewis Barnett
Well known British actor




Samuel Barnett is an English actor. He has performed on stage, film, television, radio and achieved recognition for his work on the stage and film versions of The History Boys by Alan Bennett.

Samuel Barnett is from London, England but was raised in Whitby, in North Yorkshire, England. He started performing at an early age and studied acting at LAMDA.

Samuel Barnett is Jewish on his father's side and his mother is a Quaker. He is one of five children. Has appeared in the original London stage production of Alan Bennett's play, The History Boys, as well as in the New York, Sydney, Wellington and Hong Kong productions plus radio and film versions of the play. He had been involved in The History Boys from its very first reading.

In 2009 he played John Everett Millais in the BBC series Desperate Romantics and Joseph Severn in the film Bright Star. Samuel Barnett was nominated for Evening Standard Award as most promising newcomer for his role in The Marriage of Figaro in 2002. He won best newcomer and best supporting actor in a play at the Theatre goers Choice Awards for his work on the original West End production of The History Boys. He was nominated for the 29th annual Olivier Award for Performance in a Supporting Role. He won a 2006 Drama Desk Award and was nominated for a 2006 Tony Award for his work on the Broadway production. Samuel was nominated for the 2006 British Independent Film Award for most promising newcomer (On Screen) for his work on the film version of The History Boys.


The History Boys

Click icon for details



Photos and information from: and various other web sites



Samuel Barnett and Rosemary

Rosemary, great granddaughter of

Solomon Wolf Sasiene and Rebecca Zwart





Rosemary has been hard of hearing since her early childhood. Having a strong passion for the theatre Rosemary found that attending her favourite stage shows was becoming a challenging experience.


Rosemary says:  I have been hard of hearing since I was a child and have used subtitles on TV for a long time. I hadn’t been to the theatre for about 20 years until I discovered STAGETEXT captioning quite by chance when we went to the Open Air Theatre, Regent’s Park, with my husband’s school party to see Much Ado About Nothing in 2008.  


I decided to find out more and now regularly use the STAGETEXT calendar to the full. I particularly like going to National Theatre productions as they give out synopses if you want them and make sure you are happy where you are sitting. The NT has a number of productions that are at other theatres too so we have been to a few of them.


Click the StageText icon to view Rosemary`s full article


With thanks & gratitude to Rosemary for her kind contribution of this photo and details to
the Sassienie Worldwide Family Website


Branch four

Doris Marie Sassienie

Daughter of Jacob (Jack) Sassienie & Rachel Shine

London, England - 1970s


UK cabaret singer and has appeared in TV documentary and many epic films which included an appearance with Richard Burton in the

classic 1964 movie, Beckett. Stage name: Dorian Lane.


Video: an exclusive Dorian Lane presentation studio recording with picture show



With thanks & appreciation to Farley David for his kind contribution of photos, songs and details to
 the Sassienie Worldwide Family Website

In Memory Of Doris Sassienie ( - 2008)


Branch one

Paul Sassienie and his wife, Melanie


England - 2016


Paul Sassienie and his co-writer Howard Ricklow have broad experience in radio and television contemporary comedy and had associations with some of the biggest names in British show business, including Morecambe and Wise and Roy Hudd. 


In 1997 Paul Sassienie and Howard Ricklow were commissioned by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) for the long running radio favourite, Week Ending, which from 1970 to 1998 was a satirical radio current affairs sketch show first broadcast on BBC Radio 4, after which they were commissioned to write for BBC Radio 4 the complete seven series of, The Way It Is, a topical news spoof show that ran for five series between 1998 and 2001. Paul and Howard contributed to, The 11 O’Clock Show, a satirical late-night British television comedy series on Channel 4, which featured topical sketches and commentary on news items of the day. It ran from 30 September 1998 to 8 December 2000. Their credits also include Dead Ringers, a British radio and television comedy impressions show broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and later BBC TWO, in addition to CBeebies children’s favourite Gigglebiz and many more.


The multi-talented Paul Sassienie and Howard Ricklow co-wrote with Mitch Winehouse his book, Amy My Daughter, described by Q Magazine as, A fitting tribute to her incredible story Their area of specialism is comedy but their expertise and professionalism of writing Amy, My Daughter, has shown them to be sensitive interviewers, top notch researchers and accomplished writers of creative non-fiction and narrative journalism.


Videos: excerpts from The 11 O’Clock Show, Dead Ringers and CBeebies Gigglebiz.

































Paul Sassienie books:  The Comic Book - The One Essential Guide For Comic Book Fans Everywhere.


    Click on book image for details

The number one lavishly illustrated guide to the world of comics, designed for anyone who collect or treasures these unique cultural icons.

Provides invaluable information on assessing, grading & valuing comics.


Videos and details taken from various websites to include in the Sassienie Worldwide Family Website,

and photo taken from with the kind approval of Melanie Sassienie

Branch three

Neil Ben

    Great grandson of Julia Sasiene & Lewis Barnett



Neil Ben is a BBC trained, BAFTA nominated producer / director, with over 20 years working in

television and video production


Described as ‘a safe pair of hands’ Neil has written, directed and produced for many broadcasters and production companies including, BBC Children’s, Nickelodeon, Sky, Discovery Kids, Teachers TV, Channel 5, CBeebies, BBC Education, the DfES, Ladybird Television, Contender Entertainment, Pearson Broadband, BVS Training and Ragdoll Productions.


From comedy sketches for primary maths pupils, studio discussions for business people, animations for language learning, documentaries for health and safety, graphic-rich programmes for technical subjects and to drama reconstructions for corporate training, Neil is a master of his craft.


Alongside producing and directing, Neil writes and edits many of the programmes he produces.



Holistic Films was created by award-winning Producer / Director Neil Ben. Neil brings over 20 years experience working

in the television industry to the company, and combines this with as many years working on his self-development and spiritual growth.


With over 20 years working in the broadcast industry, Neil Ben of Holistic Films started his career at BBC Schools TV.

Here is a selection of some of his earlier work:


Video: Neil Ben BBC Education Show reel


Neil Ben from Holistic Films produced and script edited two animation series for BBC Learning and CBBC. One of the series

"Just So Darwin" was nominated for a Children's BAFTA:


Video: Neil Ben BBC Animation Reel



Just So Darwin

Click icon for details


Photo taken by Anthony Steel. Videos and details taken from various websites to include in the Sassienie Worldwide Family Website,

with the kind approval of Neil Ben


Branch four

Professor Maurice Sasieni PhD


Professor, Scientist & Mathematician. Retired research scientist. Worked for NASA Space Agency, the United States military & the British Coal mining industry. Formulator of the SASIENI RULE of mathematical calculation

Professor Maurice Wolf Sasieni with wife Amelia and baby Staphanie Sasieni

World War 1 veteran-David Sasieni, Stephanie Eda Sasieni, Amelia Copisarow, Peter David Sasieni,
 Maurice Wolf Sasieni, Pamela Ruth Sasieni & Fanny Vangelder

Maurice Memories: Maurice Sasieni reminisces about coal, margarine and how he came to miss the chance to save the world from “Cats”, “Starlight Express” and “Phantom of the Opera”. An exhilarating life experience of a genius

Some fifty odd years ago I worked for the Coal Board as a research scientist. Although based in London I regularly visited the coalfields and must have been underground in at least twenty pits – not really much fun when you either walk a mile with your head bent or bang it on the low roof. The pit ponies did better! It is illegal for the roof to be so low that they could scrape their backs. I recall two other things about the mines, there was the miner who told us “if you scientists want to help me, you could fit a mini-motor to my shovel”. There was the fact that many of the underground workers could not speak a sentence without using the F word at least once, but I never heard the word in the canteen when there were women serving.

In 1955, I decided that I had had enough of crawling around coal mines and was fortunate enough to obtain an appointment as a research assistant at a place I had never heard of in a city previously unknown to me, other than that it was in the United States. I found myself at Case Institute of Technology in Cleveland, Ohio. Apart from eventually granting me a PhD, Case is also well known for the Michelson-Morley experiment. These two gentlemen measured the speed of light with sufficient accuracy to refute the “Ether Theory” and to lay the basis of Einstein’s theory of Relativity. Of course, as soon as the local Jewish matriarchs discovered that there was an unattached Jewish male from London in their midst, they could not wait to introduce me to a visiting Jewish teacher from Manchester. A year later, Amelia and I were married and we subsequently produced three little Americans. We stayed in Cleveland for ten years, with a year out as visiting professor in Oslo. This came about because when I got my PhD I was offered a permanent post at Case Institute and I told them that it had to pay enough for us to visit our families in England every few years. I was told that there were three visiting professorships going, in Oslo, Rome and Bonn. I rang Amelia and asked if she’d prefer a year in Oslo, Rome or Bonn. She chose Oslo on the grounds that the climate would be healthier than Rome and that memories of Germany were too recent for Bonn. Oslo turned out to be a good choice as Rome and Bonn expect visiting lecturers to speak Italian and German but no one expects foreigners to speak Norwegian in Norway.

We had a wonderful year. There is (or was) a very friendly Jewish community in Oslo and Norwegians are very friendly. The children (by then our two girls were two and three) chattered to other children in Norwegian but we never really got the hang of it. Virtually all adults speak English in Oslo.

I recall a visit to Washington when I parked the car on a twenty-minute meter to take the tour through the White House. When we reached the White House there was a long queue so I walked up to the policeman at the gate and asked where there was a better place to park the car. “Do I hear an English accent?” he asked, and off he went on a long account of his experiences in wartime London. “This is all very nice but what about my car?” I asked. “Be my guest,” he said and we marched straight past the queue and through the White House. It takes about ten minutes and we just made it back to the car in time. I thought we would get lynched but no one said a word. In 1965 we came back to London.

Because of my consulting experience while at Case, I was offered a job in Unilever’s marketing division. Amelia became a teacher at Yavneh, the primary school recently created by Wembley Synagogue in Middlesex, England. Today, when she runs into a small Wembley grandchild, she says “I remember his (or her) parent when I taught at Yavneh”.

Around 1970, when in New York on business, I was looking for a taxi out-side my hotel to go to Lever Bros. Two bearded individuals, one carrying a guitar, asked if I was going past Grand Central Station as they were late for a recording session near there. I agreed to share the ride and asked who they were. Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber were most grateful for the ride. I have often the thought that if I had said No, they might have missed the recording and maybe the world would never have heard of them.

In 1973, there was a conference in Tel Aviv and my boss agreed it was appropriate for me to go. I told my secretary to book flights and she came back to say that the travel department was not allowed to book to Israel because of the Arab League boycott. I went to the company secretary who agreed that I could go provided the company name did not appear on the list of delegates. When I arrived, the first person I saw was one Oozie Friedman whose lapel badge said “Lever Bros. – New York”. Of course, observing the Arab boycott was illegal in the United States. Amelia and I very much enjoyed our first visit to Israel. Around this time I ran into a young manager at Van den Bergh Foods Ltd, the worldwide margarine makers. He was responsible for what were then two quite small brands. One was Flora and the other was Tomor. I said to him “if you can make Stork taste like butter, why can’t you do something about the taste of Tomor?” He said that the rules on Tomor were quite small and the rabbinical restrictions were such that it was not worth the cost of reformulating it.

Times change! Today, Flora is the country’s leading margarine and that young manager is a main board director at Lever. I am retired. Tomor has been sold to Rakusen and Wembley has succeeded where the mighty Unilever could not. We have a Van den Bergh brand much to our taste: Martin, our rabbi!

Article by Maurice Sasieni

In Memory Of Maurice Sasieni (1926 - 2014)


Branch two

Scientist & Professor Peter Sasieni BA (Hons) MA (Cantab) MS PhD

Professor of Biostatistics & Cancer Epidemiology


Deputy Director Cancer Research UK Centre for Epidemiology, Mathematics & Statistics, Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine, Director Cancer Prevention Trials Unit

Photo: USA 2007

Professor Sasieni is known for his research in medical statistics and cancer epidemiology.

He has pioneered the field of monitoring service screening and made discoveries that have modified the practice of cervical screening. In statistics, he is an acknowledged expert in survival analysis with several important publications, and his method for the analysis of genetic association studies is widely used and cited.

He was the first to show that the re-launched cervical screening programme in the United Kingdom was having an effect on cervical cancer incidence and mortality. His paper on trends in adenocarcinoma of the cervix was the first to highlight the magnitude of the potential epidemic of this cancer. He has provided the most accurate and detailed quantification of the impact of cervical screening. He discovered that cervical screening using cytology is substantially less effective at preventing cervical cancer in young women than it is in older women.

Together with colleagues from St Mark’s hospital, he was the first to show that coloscopic surveillance and polypectomy reduced the incidence of colorectal cancer in those with a moderately elevated risk. He has researched the value of HPV testing in cervical screening. Peter Sasieni produced a landmark overview of HPV testing for the HTA and more recently an individual patient overview of HPV testing in primary cervical screening. He has played a leading role in clinical trials of HPV testing both in the UK and in Peru.

Professor Sasieni has become involved in chemo prevention of cancer and he set up, and is director of, the only British clinical trials unit specializing in cancer screening and prevention.


Professor Peter Sasieni
- Cervical cancer vaccination and screening NCRI 2010


Branch two

Professor Justin Stebbing


Great grandson of Julia Sasiene and Lewis Barnett



Consultant Medical Oncologist

Professor Justin Stebbing trained in medicine at Trinity College Oxford, England, where he gained a triple first class degree. After completion of junior doctor posts in Oxford, he undertook a residency at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in the United States, returning to London, England to continue his training in oncology at The Royal Marsden and St Bartholomew's Hospitals. Professor Stebbing's PhD research investigated the interplay between the immune system and cancer.

Justin has published over 300 peer-reviewed papers in journals such as the Lancet, New England Journal, Blood, the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Annals of Internal Medicine, as well as writing for national newspapers and presenting new data on optimal cancer therapies at major international conferences. His focus at Imperial is on new therapies in cancer and the systemic management of patients with solid malignancies such as breast, gastro-intestinal (colon, pancreas) and lung cancers. His laboratory work is concentrated on new druggable target discovery.

Professor Justin Stebbing is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, the American Board of Internal Medicine and the Royal College of Pathologists and sits on the advisory Boards of five biotechnology companies. He chairs the World Vaccine Congress following his research into cancer vaccines and he is on the editorial board of a number of world leading general medical and cancer journals such as the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

In 2011 Justin's team discovered a new cancer gene, work that has been published in Nature Medicine.

Click image to view video of Professor Justin Stebbing


Photo, video and details taken from various websites to include in the Sassienie Worldwide Family Website,

with the kind approval of Professor Justin Stebbing


Branch four

Rita Sasiene
Hickory, North Carolina, USA

Famous American Poet


Rita Sasiene had been writing poetry since she began kindergarten. When in second grade her teacher took her notebook and later asked, who wrote those poems? Rita replied; what’s a poem?


Her poetry and other writings have been published in Proteus, Best Poems of 1960, The G.W. Forum, A Search for The Soul, All time Favourite Poetry, Great Contemporary Poems, Amidst The Splendor, Best Poems of 1997, among other books and publications.

Rita Sasiene was never married and had no children or close family. In November of 2012 age 81, Rita died alone in her home at, Clermont, Lake County, Florida, USA. Her body lay undiscovered for several weeks.


One of the last published poems of Rita Sasiene:


Sometimes I feel so empty and alone
So yearning to reach out and hold someone
So desperate to hear a friendly voice
So hungry for the love of anyone
So afraid I might be turned away
I hide my arms from those I long to hold
From all the strangers in the world I live
From all the magic their strange lives unfold 
I yearn to go to them, I try
But fears, like monsters hands appear--and then the fears begin to pound my wounded heart
And I retreat from strangers, cursing them
Untitled You faded first while still before my eyes
Then one by one the doors began to close
Uncaring keys locked you and me apart
Malicious fate-- so used to love disposed. Now and then-- through key holes or their cracks
You came, and walls of stone melted away
And in those moments when I had you back
Tomorrow looked with envy at today. Last night you came in my remembering
And all the pain provoking me inside just disappeared, and left serenity
Fate grumbled and an ecstasy replied. Reality is jealous and won't let go
Remembering be in my heart for long
So while I love, and while my heart is safe
I want to die, to lose you just once more

Rita Sasiene

Publisher: Amer Literary Pr

Publication Date: 1998-05-01

Language: English

Format: Paperback

ISBN-10: 1561674141

ISBN-13: 9781561674145

Product ID: EPID535989





Photo and information taken from various web sites


In Memory Of Rita Sasiene (1931 - 2012)

Branch four

Joel Sasieni 



Sasieni By Dunhill
 ...a piece of history!"

The Sasieni Tobacco Dynasty

In 1918 Joel Sasieni started his own London pipe making firm. Joel died in 1945 and his son Alfred Sasieni became the successor to his father`s business. Alfred sold the firm in 1979 to another company, which concluded the Sasieni Family tobacco Dynasty, although Alfred continued as a director for some years.

Sasieni was one of the great collectible and smokable pipes of England's recent past. Today, however, they are no longer produced by the original company.

Joel Sasieni began his career working as an apprentice tobacco pipe maker for Charatan and left to manage a "new" pipe making operation for Alfred Dunhill in 1910. He left Dunhill in 1918 to start his own London tobacco pipe making firm. His son Alfred took over the company reigns after World War II.

The majority of the pipes were exported to the United States, where they were renowned for their famous Eight Dot and Four Dot series of "firsts". Ironically, these same pipes were sold in Britain and other European countries with a One Dot configuration on the stem and for years U.S. tourists passed them up as "rejects," rather than as the high grade "firsts" they really were. The company was sold in 1979 and today the pipes are produced by a completely different firm, primarily for sale in the United States.

Although today`s Four Dot Sasieni pipes are excellent value, it is the pre-1979 One, Four and Eight Dot Sasieni's made by the original family that hold the most interest and value for collectors.


Below: some famous Sasieni pipe smokers

                                       Albert Einstein           Douglas MacArthur             Gerald Ford

                                                     Bing Crosby                   Clark Gable                     Gary Grant



Video: Balkan Sasieni tobacco


In Memory Of Joel Sasieni
 (1883 - 1945)


Branch four

Alan Freedman, Keith Freedman & Esther Sassiene

Alan Freedman & Keith Freedman sons of: Esther (Stella) Sassiene and Harry Freedman

Founders of the hugely successful Brutus Jean Company


From Success to Success

The brothers Alan Freedman and Keith Freedman were both born in Hammersmith, London, England of native cockney East London parents.


Alan Freedman left school at the age of 16 to work as a salesman in fashionable Kings Road Chelsea, London, England during the mid-60's. Less than a year later he became the assistant manager there.


In 1966 at the age of 17, Alan and his brother, Keith, started they're own business, Brutus Mens Wear, importing garments from Hong Kong.  The company began with a single style of sweater and later added several different designs to the range. These designer sweaters became very popular especially with younger people. Profits began to increase and the brothers decided to expand the company and produce other fashion products under the trade name of Brutus, which included fashion wear both for men and women.


The brothers Alan Freedman and Keith Freedman introduced shirts into the Brutus collection and eventually the award-winning Brutus Jeans. These Jeans were of a unique fashion design which the likes of have never been seen before. They became hugely popular and developed into a status symbol with young people, including skinheads, football fans and fashion conscious people of the time.


By the early 1970's Alan and Keith Freedman held a 20% share of the UK men's shirt market, plus had and controlled 15% of the UK denim jean market.


Brutus Jeans became a household name, a par with other popular branded fashion goods such as Levi, Wrangler and Ben Shearman. Sales were boosted by a massive advertising campaign that included television and radio. The brothers won awards for their advertising and had a catch tune for their TV commercials titled: Put Your Brutus Jeans On. The theme was catchy and in 1976 the title was changed to: Put Your Jeans On, that became and remained a number 1 hit in the UK music charts for three weeks.


In 1980 the brothers expanded the company further and bought a group of jean stores located throughout the United Kingdom.  14 years later Alan visited Canyon Ranch, Tucson in the United States. On that visit Alan Freedman decided that he was going to settle there and live in America permanently, subsequently leaving the UK business and retiring from the fashion clothing industry.


In Tucson, Alan met and fell in love with the beautiful Caroline. There they married in 1997. By 1998 Alan’s genius for business was brimming to the top and he joined with his wife Caroline to begin a successful real estate career, that still flourishes today.


Caroline was born and raised in Indiana, USA. She left Indiana after high school to attend college in Gunnison, Colorado. There she received her B.A. degree in Business Administration and Psychology. She lived in Colorado for several years after college and then returned to school  and obtained a Masters Degree. She received this degree from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, USA. From there she went on to work for Eli Lilly, a major pharmaceutical company.


In 1993, Caroline decided to move back to the West. After visiting Tucson, she fell in love with the mountains and desert. Caroline has a fondness of fine homes and decided to settle in Tucson and enter into the real estate business. Caroline brought her enthusiasm, energy, keenness and skills to matching people with the perfect home. She has an amazing ability to carry the whole inventory of available houses in her head. Her latest project (2006) is the study of Feng Shui. It is an art of finding and creating homes that reflect clients desire for a sacred space.


Alan Freedman brings his enthusiasm, energy, and entrepreneurial skills - not to mention his English charm - to the Tucson real estate market, giving the husband and wife team a solid business background.


They are both outdoor enthusiasts and love to hike, bike, run, or walk through Sabino Canyon.


Article - Taken from the Alan & Caroline Freedman Realty Executives website.


Click icon to view website

Addition information by Alan Freedman and Anthony Steel


Alan Freedman, Esther Sassiene & Keith Freedman. Grand Canyon - USA 2004

Keith Freedman with wife, Michelle. Grand Canyon - USA 2004

Alan Freedman with his wife, Caroline - USA 2003


Video: UK Brutus jeans ad from the 1970s


Video: David Dundas number 1 hit song taken from the Brutus Jeans commercial


With thanks & gratitude to Alan Freedman for his kind contribution of these photos and details to
the Sassienie Worldwide Family Website


Branch one & spouses



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