Minnesota’s festival of performing arts
August 1–11, 2013 / Minneapolis

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Teenage Misery: A Horror Musical

Musical theater /

By Devious Mechanics

Written by Keith Hovis

When Carrie's best friends cheat her out of the chance to meet her celebrity crush, they learn hell hath no fury like a fangirl scorned. Classic horror movies and musical theater collide in this dark comedy.

Opera/New Music

World premiere, First-time Minnesota Fringe Festival producer

Just so you know, this show has Violence, Adult language.

The creators say this show is appropriate for ages 16 and up.

Thursday, 8/1 10:00 p.m.
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Sunday, 8/4 2:30 p.m.
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Tuesday, 8/6 7:00 p.m.
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Thursday, 8/8 8:30 p.m.
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Sunday, 8/11 5:30 p.m.
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Theatre in the Round

245 Cedar Ave.

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Audience reviews

Young Company Comes up BIG!

By Jack Silverman / August 15, 2013
This user has reviewed 10 shows

This was a fun show to end our "triple show" night. It was light Fringe entertainment (with a macabre theme) and worked well in the round. Kelly Houlehan as Carrie was especially good but the entire cast was right on! Hope to see more from this troupe next year.

Fun and impressive

By Lisa Hu / August 11, 2013
This user has reviewed 12 shows

These jokes were funny. Self-referential, self-aware, place-specific, satirical humor works here. Keith Hovis writes a tight script that equally celebrates and questions millenials--and he is very good at it. Talented performers too--huge props to the vocal chops of Kelly Houlehan. Smart and specific staging too, very good use of the round. What a fun, weird, dark show with some catchy music and smart lyrics. There were a few weak performances, sure, but overall I was quite pleased.

Fun and Smart!!

By Dan Morris / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

Easily the best show I've seen at Fringe. A fast pace, unique plot, and a smart soundtrack create a triple threat piece of theatre. I loved the unique setting and inside jokes, whether for Minnesotans or quick-referencing the limitations of the Fringe Festival requirements itself, the writing is very smart and hilarious. Great production, a must see!!!

Hilarious Polished and Professional!!

By Deb Ann / August 8, 2013
This user has reviewed 6 shows

I had no idea what I was getting into when I viewed this show. Right from the get go it captured me. The singers/actors are all so talented ... and crazy!! This is my 10th show - It is the best one I've seen!! Go see this one - you will be totally entertained from the beginning to the very end - truly!~


By Amanda Timek / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

Teenage Misery: A Horror Musical is one of the best Fringe Shows I've seen. One second I'm laughing over an all too eager CPR performance, the next I'm in shock over a quick and unexpected death. This show keeps the audience wondering what's going to happen next, and never fails to disappoint. The cast is energetic and passionate, the lyrics comedic while also slightly disturbing (in a good way!), and the plot full out crazy, yet it all seems to fit together into a well-rounded and entertaining musical. Great job!

What a Hoot!

By Tamara Titsworth / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

There was not a moment I was not smiling or laughing. I didn't want it to end! Engaging songs and not songs for the sake of singing. Campy at its best! Great young talent and some new faces. Looking around the theatre others had the same response to the show as I did. There were a couple of times I wanted the show to be on a proscenium stage because I missed (what I am sure were) hilarious facial expressions from Shana Berg, but overall great use of the space they were given. Kelly Houlehan is an absolutely creepy and charming delight! As an actor, I would love to work with this company! A must see for any musical or comedy fans.

2 people found this review helpful

A Must See Musical

By Marisa Tejeda / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 11 shows

Too many elements about this show were amazing.
First of all, the cast is INCREDIBLE. So many standout performers in this show. Kelly Houlehan as the lead role was not only hilarious, but her voice gave me chills the whole time. But honestly, the whole cast did an impeccable job. The writing was hilarious and upbeat, and the music was fresh and edgy. This show was brilliant and funny. I suggest you take time to see this awesome musical jam packed with jokes, amazing music, and talent!

2 people found this review helpful

best fringe show I've ever seen

By Emily Mackmiller / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

I make it a point to check out a few shows each year, and this is by far the best I've ever seen at Fringe. The cast is amazing, the songs are wonderfully written, and the script is equal parts funny and freaky.

Definitely recommend!!

1 person found this review helpful

This is what Fringe means

By Mark Webb / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 48 shows

Every year I'm asked to describe what the Fringe festival is to someone that doesn't know. THIS is the show I'm using to describe it. Fresh original script, clever original music, and stellar performances all around. Nice use of the TRP space. This one is quick paced, and laced with a boatload of talent - I could listen to Kelly Houlehan sing all day. If you haven't seen it yet, FIND... A... SLOT!

2 people found this review helpful


By Eric Salo / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 56 shows

Shows like this are why I go to Fringe. I loved every moment of it. Four and a half stars rounded up for sheer homicidal glee.

3 people found this review helpful

Encore Worthy

By Philip Matthews / August 4, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

This was easily not only one of the best Fringe shows I've seen within the last two seasons but one of the best shows I've seen in the Twin Cities. The writing was smart and quick and full of inside jokes about Minnesota and the cities that made the audience feel included. The music was steller and fit the feel of the show perfectly. The cast was talented both in their acting and singing. and navigated the Theatre in the Round perfectly. I think this is one of those must see Fringe shows this year.

3 people found this review helpful

Timeless Fun 'in the Round.

By David Premack / August 3, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

From the onset of old pop music in the preshow, Teenage Misery takes you back, but make-no-mistake, this is not a dated show. Its a vibrant and refreshing twist on teenage obsession of fame and the extreme lengths (however horrible) our youth will go to meet their current idle. While the book and music are solid for the current production, a few rewrites are likely needed for this show to move past the "Fringe" environment. The story however, remains timeless and is portrayed efficiently by a crop of young actors. While the book highlights a leading lady, the company feels more like an ensemble, each giving way to one-anothers strengths. Go see this show- its a fun, witty, enjoyable musical satire reflective of todays troubled youth.

2 people found this review helpful

Writing a musical aint easy

By Anna Lovrien / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

I was overall impressed with this musical, the cast was good (particularly Shana Berg, who had a great duet with Jordan Oxborough that I think was called "Psychically". Listen for it!). The humor was genuinely funny, and it would be a nice light night at the theater if you don't mind a little (cartoony) murder. As for the writing, I did find some of it very fun, but there were some unconvincing plot machinations, particularly involving Matthew Flint's character. I would encourage the writer, Keith Hovis, to continue revising this piece, I think he shows good potential, and with a greater logical progression of the plot this really could be a great musical.

1 person found this review helpful

Fun, Funny, and Fresh

By Geoffrey Conklin / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

A really fun musical with a really talented cast. The musical abilities in this show are truly astounding and you will not be disappointed.

1 person found this review helpful


By Irene Duong / August 12, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

I can't believe I waited until the very last day to see this show! The music, the vocals, the jokes were spot on. If you are a millennial (or at least know one), you will laugh out of your mind with the pop culture jokes and clever lyrics. I really hope this becomes a full length play. I want to see it again! Or at least have a recording of the music!

Teenage Misery

By Linda Hildebrant / August 10, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

Amazing cast, fantastic music, lyrics and singing. Very fun to watch. Entertaining and funny even if you are scared of or dislike horror or musicals. Teenage love and angst, white suburban privilege, granola eaters, new agers, environmentalists, illegal drugs -- there's something for everyone here --with heart and a bit of a twist.

Youngins makin' their mark!

By Max Wojtanowicz / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 17 shows

These kids are unbelievably talented, and the fact that this is really one of their first Fringe outings is very very impressive. The show is funny and smart, and I can't wait to see what they do next!

Five stars plus more

By Roger William / August 8, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

Belly rolling humor
Feet stomping music
Ear feasting singing
Eye catching acting
Mind stirring story line

Well worth the time and money for enjoyment

Wishing all members of the play a bright and productive future in the entertainment industry

so fun!

By Lindsay Odegaard / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

This show was so fun and creative. Great Music and a fun story. Very campy and hilarious. I loved the songs and the combination of pop culture classics and modern pop culture influences. Great work everyone involved!

Teenage Fun

By caroline mannheimer / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

I took my 9 yr old daughter on a night off from our show &she loved it. I'm not gonna lie, so did I. This show is like theatrical junk food; it's not gonna teach you much, you won't leave a more well-rounded person- Shakespeare it ain't- but that's the fun of it. The cast are young and exuberant and their joy is contagious!
The songs are musically a teeny bit repetitive (non-musicians probably wouldn't notice) but the lyrics are so clever it makes up for the small keyboard sound. I'd love to see this play done with a full band...
Anyway. The casting is spot-on: the "teen idol" is very cute&the big voice that came out of the skinny gay character was really, really good. Loved "Hannah"."Whitney"'s voice is lovely. A fun, well-written show!

2 people found this review helpful

Hilarious—You've Gotta See It!

By Marlys Harris / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

A talented ensemble—they all had great voices, with no mikes—put together a trenchant satire on celebrity worship and teens-turned-psychopaths. The music is catchy, with sharp lyrics, and the players use the Theater in the Round to the max. It's a laugh a minute. Don't miss this one.

2 people found this review helpful

Add this show to your queue

By Richard Jackson / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 55 shows

I added this show based on the buzz and am very glad that I did. A terrific concept, good writing, mostly strong singing, solid staging, and uniformly strong performances made for an immensely entertaining hour.

2 people found this review helpful

Please go beyond the Fringe!

By Natalie Adams / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 20 shows

This was a truly delightful show and it is a must see! I wish that this show will continue on it's journey, expand and become the full length musical it deserves! Everything is near perfection from the writing, lyrics, brilliant actors, creative staging, and the simple yet great one man piano band! If you love Bye Bye Biridie, Misery, teenage angst, quirky and catchy songs, and you want to have a great time don't miss this show!! I was humming the rest of the day to the catchy tunes! Bravo!

2 people found this review helpful

It was good.

By Doug Burger / August 4, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

A quality concept for a Fringe show that tells a good story in the hour available. Punchy humor throughout. Great music and a talented cast makes this a highly recommend.

1 person found this review helpful

A Bloody Good Time

By Reba Clamp / August 4, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

It's Legally Blonde meets Lieutenant of Inishmore. High energy and dark comedy, packed with incredibly relevant comedic references and humor that any Minnesotan native or new will appreciate. Just when you think it's gone too far, they take it one step further along with plenty of unexpected twists and turns. You definitely won't leave unsatisfied.

2 people found this review helpful

Contemporary Musical Theatre!

By Andrew Waldron / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

This blend of horror movies, teenage obsession, and some campy musical theatre, worked well. I enjoyed each of the characters, their solo moments of expression and the meta-theatrical commentary on 60 minutes sometimes being not enough time to give exposition on everyone. The accompaniment was a single piano and it's a tribute to the musician that he seemed to be having as much fun with the show as the audience. Overall, well done.

2 people found this review helpful

The Best Horror Musical

By Sarah Hallaway / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

I think what I loved most about this show was its humor. There were a lot of references to regional, Minnesota things that were enjoyable. It also made fun of itself to great success. The music was very catchy, fun and the lyrics were well thought out. I honestly wish the show had gone on longer. The actors were fantastic to watch, they really connected well together and had great chemistry.

The story was a wonderful commentary on how teenagers are raised these days: with great expectations for success and little understanding of consequences. I loved how it was able to touch on that without being at all serious (until you think about how spot on it is later).

Would definitely recommend to others or see it again!

2 people found this review helpful

I don't pop culture much.

By Jena Young / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

4.5 stars bumped up to 5 because of the tongue in cheek quips. I don't know anything about Misery, so I'm just assuming a couple of the plot points that seemed unneeded were from my own ignorance. I always worry when seeing a mash-up that something's going to get forced, but surprisingly, the two played well together. The cast was great, the music well done, but my favorite was the quick and quirky comedy that happens along the way.

1 person found this review helpful

No Misery Here

By Kevin McDonnell / August 11, 2013
This user has reviewed 18 shows

The musical was fun & fresh. The well-written script & music was hilarious, current and left me wanting more. Seriously, I'd love to see an expanded, full length version of this musical! The characters were funny and well-developed. I cannot wait to see what this company creates next.

Teen Idol meets Sweeney Todd

By Fringivitis Vulgaris / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 33 shows

I like this show much more than I'd expected. Cutesy, gory premise in a Fringey presentation seems pleasantly palatable. I was delighted to find that this cast has their chops! They can sing, they can handle choreographed scenes in the round, and they act without overacting. The story affectionately cites plenty of familiar sources of suspense and gore. The music was certainly influenced by "Sweeney Todd" but I'm fond of that show. I was initially peeved about the "gay molesting straight" moment and then realized it was exactly parallel with the "straight molesting straight" that occurred in the same scene. Local references like cheap shots about Edina are sprinkled throughout. Oh, and this show checks off both "fake blood" and "gratuitous bondage" on your Fringe Bingo cards.

Young and fresh, lots of fun

By Suzanne Sharrock / August 9, 2013
This user has reviewed 56 shows

This was a well-executed musical by an exuberant group of young actors with terrific solo and ensemble voices. Probably should win "best original vocals" if that category existed. It's silly, "dark" - but not _really - and it's very enjoyable - the Theatre in the Round makes hearing the actors somewhat problematic, so I missed some of the hilarious (based on audience reaction) lines. Part of its brilliance is in capturing so many aspects of teenage life/drama so well, obviously done to the extreme, with great good humor. Such a talented young company.

1 person found this review helpful

Air Guitar

By Laura Bidgood / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 9 shows

Yes and air guitars to this show. Fun, whimsical and all around terrific! The actors are having fun on stage and so we in the audience are having fun. The score and script are well executed and they play the TRP stage fantastically. One of my fringe favorites for this year!

1 person found this review helpful

Deviously crafted

By Jill Iverson / August 7, 2013
This user has reviewed 3 shows

This show had some FABULOUS comedic writing! My favorite performer was Shana Berg! What a talent. So hilarious. The only problems I saw were that some characters were difficult to hear when they were singing so I missed some of that clever writing. I will also say that the homosexual jokes tried a little too hard at times. They were such easy puns, and I thought it brought down the overall strength of the show. I really enjoyed myself! Hope to see more from the Devious Mechanics. :)

1 person found this review helpful

Fun and Inventive

By Ali Graba / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

Teenage Misery is an absolute delight, and a must-see for the 2013 Fringe. The songs were so catchy, I would buy the soundtrack. And each actor is phenomenal; there's not one weak link. I expected fun and fluff, and while the show does keep you laughing with one-liners and ridiculous onstage murders, I left feeling like I had seen more than a silly musical-- Teenage Misery is great theatre, no qualifiers necessary.

2 people found this review helpful

Pretty entertaining

By Ward Rubrecht / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

A theater in the round production with some great humor (local and otherwise), catchy tunes, and a fun premise.

Had some rough edges (the group songs could've been tighter, some of the actors seemed to be singing outside their range) and the script, while entertaining, lacks much emotional or thematic punch.

Recommend for people into funny stuff, psychothrillers, and musicals.

1 person found this review helpful

A Bloody Good Time

By Andrew Rakerd / August 6, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

An homage to Stephen King's "Misery," this show is also a masterpiece on it's own. The music is catchy and clever, and the character's are wacky and memorable. I particularly enjoyed Kelly Houlehan, who switches effortlessly from being shrieking, teenage fangirl to a murderous psychopath. Plenty of laughs and plenty of blood, this show has something for the whole family to enjoy. Well, maybe not the whole family, but certainly for adults with a certain taste for the macabre.

1 person found this review helpful


By larry bieza / August 5, 2013
This user has reviewed 19 shows

I'd like to preface my review by saying that I am not friends or family, and know of no one involved with this production. I had an open spot in my fringe schedule and since I was nearby I happened to walk into this one. I'm so glad I did! Out of 18 shows so far this is my favorite! It's a fun, bloody story about teenage celebrity worship gone amuck. The songs are hilarious, and the cast is solid and cleary enjoying the fact that they are in such an entertaining show. This show deserves sellouts it's that fun. You will not be disappointed. Go!

2 people found this review helpful

Fun Time

By Heidi Ziemer / August 4, 2013
This user has reviewed 2 shows

Some days you need a great laugh and this fits the bill. After seeing this I sent sympathy notes to my sisters who have teenagers as well as the times for the next shows.

3 people found this review helpful

Lots of Fun

By Lowell (Rick) Prescott / August 4, 2013
This user has reviewed 6 shows

Very funny show with a great concept, good acting and singing, and a simple yet effective original score. Definitely recommended.

2 people found this review helpful

Rookie to the Fringe

By Ben Eng / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 4 shows

if your looking for something fun and are into musicals you should see this show. It was a not stop laugh fest and you will leave the theatre smiling from ear to ear. the cast is great and the music is also well done.

1 person found this review helpful


By Nathalie Young / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

I really enjoyed this show. The writing was clever, and the actors were hilarious. The show was in the round, which I thought made it seem more real. Overall, I would really recommend that you see this show. It will leave you feeling great, yet a little worried for the pop stars in our world.

2 people found this review helpful

Make sure to check this one out

By Tony Ducklow / August 2, 2013
This user has reviewed 1 show

Highly enjoyed this quirky musical.

The plot was fast paced, witty and packed with snarky pop culture references. The group that I went with couldn't stop laughing and the pure ridiculousness of the story being woven together.

Strong singing, cleaver catchy tunes, and constant gags makes this a must see of this year's fringe.

2 people found this review helpful


Background information + more

It's Bye, Bye Birdie meets Misery by Stephen King in this dark and fun new musical. Teenage Misery sends up classic musicals and horror films like Sweeney Todd, The Shining, Carrie, Aliens, and the Rocky Horror Picture Show, while also satirizing our celebrity obsessed culture. 

Teenage Misery: A Horror Musical. 

This Fringe, heads will roll.  

Check out our review from the Star Tribune:

"Stephen King and Stephen Sondheim allusions run fast and furious in this merry musical spoof of America’s cultish obsession with shallow celebrity. Teen college student ‘Carrie’ Ann Black (Kelly Houlehan), her best female friend and their gay twink sidekick abduct teen idol Shane West and commit illegal acts upon his person. As they blithely quip, sing, and assault, the cosmos concocts a hilariously mystical retaliation. The vocally proficient cast’s giddy but focused high energy align nicely with Keith Hovis’s clever music and lyrics. Caution: all that fake blood is appropriately corny."

- John Townsend

Cast + crew bios

Kelly Houlehan

Carrie Black


Kelly is pumped to return to the Fringe Fest in a show as hilariously clever as Teenage Misery after her Fringe debut last year in Eat Street's Broken Memories. Kelly holds a BFA in Theatre Performance from Nebraska Wesleyan University and her recent credits include Lyric Arts' Barefoot in the Park (Corie), Freshwater Theatre's The Gifted Program (Brenda) and Urban Samurai's Les Liasions Dangeruses (Cecile). www.kellyhoulehan.com

Rachel Bigelow

Whitney Fuller


Rachel Bigelow has a BA in Theatre Arts from the University Of Minnesota College Of Liberal Arts. She specializes in acting, stage management, and scenic artistry. Her most recent acting work includes Human Combat Chess and Zastrossi with Six Elements Theatre Company. You may have also seen her scenic work at Valley Fair where she painted sets and drops for the Mick Mangler Show, "Hacks", and Peanut's Show during the 2012 Valley Scare season, as well as a drop for the Peanut's Show this summer. She would like to thank her husband, Jon, for his constant love and support, and hopes you enjoy the show!

Ben Tracy

Harvey Kellerman-Thompson


Ben Tracy has performed around the Twin Cities at Steppingstone Theatre, Bryant Lake Bowl, and Southwest High School, where he received a Spotlight Award for the role of Marius in Les Mis. He has also performed and studied at Interlochen in Michigan, and Wright State in Ohio, where he is pursuing a BFA in Musical Theatre. Recently, he worked with CLIMB Theatre in a bullying prevention video for the Anoka-Hennepin school district. This is his first appearance in the MN Fringe Festival.

Jordan Oxborough

Shane West


Jordan is very honored to be making his second Minnesota Fringe Festival appearance! Last year Jordan played Ezra Hinton in the premiere of The Music Box by Graber & Napolitano Productions. Jordan grew up in Eagan, MN, where he spent most of his time playing sports and doing theatre. After graduating, he decided to further pursue his fascination for theatre by first attending Normandale Community College where he was seen in four productions and then transferring to Minnesota State University Mankato, where he is currently on a BFA Musical Theatre track. Some of his favorite memories include playing: Hanschen in Spring Awakening with MSU, Dr. Pinch in The Comedy Errors with Normandale, Matt in The Fantasticks with Eat Street Players, and Joseph in Joseph ATATDC with Eagan Community Theatre. "Much love to my family and friends!"

Shana Berg

Hannah Alloran


Shana Berg is thrilled to be taking part in this smart and quirky project, and in her first Fringe Festival show. Shana is currently pursuing her master’s degree in Performance at McNally Smith College of Music and most recently seen on stage as Collette in Rendezvous with Cardboard Productions. Her previous work includes featured roles in This Side of Paradise, Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, Sisters of Swing (The History Theatre), Camelot (MSU, Mankato), Rocky Horror Picture Show, Oklahoma!, and Hair (McNally Smith College of Music). www.shanabergmusic.com

Matthew Flint

Richie Gibbs


Matthew is a 24 year old actor based out of the Twin Cities, Minnesota. With his degree in Musical Theater from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse he is overjoyed to be partaking in this production of Teenage Misery. Recent credits include: The 'Primrose Path' Guthrie theater, 'Never Mind' Colfax Theater, 'Jekyll and Hyde The Musical'The Muse Theater and many more.

Callie Meiners



Callie Meiners is a recent graduate of Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. She made her directing debut in the Twin Cities in the 2012 Minnesota Fringe Festival with Everything and Nothing by David Clark. Callie is thrilled to be working on Teenage Misery with Devious Mechanics and Sacajawea and the Average Joes with T.F.L. Theatre Company for the 2013 Minnesota Fringe Festival. Callie would like to thank Keith for this amazing opportunity.

Benjamin Tucker Thompson

Assistant Director


Benjamin is an arts administrator that sporadically finds himself on the other side of the stage lights. Recently, Benjamin performed in Minneapolis Musical Theatre's production of REEFER MADNESS and acted as Producer/Assistant Director/Sound Designer for THE STITCHER'S WIFE, part of the 2012 Minnesota Fringe Festival. Benjamin is ecstatic to be working on another Fringe production and would like to thank everyone ever, because really, we're all awesome.

Keith Hovis

Composer / Playwright / Music Director


Keith is a musician/writer/actor from the Twin Cities who spends his days working in the field of communications. His plays have been performed at the University of Minnesota, Luther College, Box Wine Theater, Six Elements Theater and three prior MN Fringe Festivals. As an actor he was most recently seen as Ralph Wiley in Minneapolis Musical Theater's Reefer Madness.

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