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WATCH: 44th Daytime Emmys Outstanding Lead Actress In A Drama Series Nominated Performances!

Five powerhouse women have been nominated in the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series at this year’s 44th Annual Daytime Emmys to be live-streamed on Sunday night, April 30th.

This year the race features: General Hospital’s Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis) and Laura Wright (Carly), The Bold and the Beautiful’s Heather Tom (Katie), and The Young and the Restless, Gina Tognoni (Phyllis) and Jess Walton (Jill). Every one of these actresses has previously won a Daytime Emmy, and in the case of several of them, multiple statuettes!

This hotly contested contest features two characters who bottled the battled as their lives spiraled out of control, a grieving mother who has to come to grips with the unthinkable, a woman who takes the stand and reveals how she was violated by an impostor and then reveals to her husband why she had an affair with his brother, and one who tries to cope as her son is near death.  All delivered riveting work.

Now after the jump watch the Lead Actress Emmy nominated reels.  Then let us know, who you think should take home the gold? Comment below!

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Probably Heather Tom.
Jess Walton is also good.

I’m with you Heather Tom is and has always been a great actress! She will probably surpass the legendary Erika Slezak EMMY record one day.

I don’t watch B&B, but I am familiar with Heather’s outstanding work as Victoria, on Y&R.
By the same token, I would not ‘entitle’ Gina Tognoni as a powerhouse. Nothing extraordinary in her portrayal of Phyllis, for me. If an actor/actress fails to touch me emotionally, I cannot, honestly, root for him or her. I never fell into the nuPhyllis hoopla!
Nancy is my pick, however, Laura and Jess are right behind her. Superlative performances!!

Gina was much better on OLTL than Y&R…she has failed to capture the flair and fun of Phyllis…plays every scene like a hardass with that scowling on her face…lacking the sensitive and texture of Michelle…it is like Gina is portraying a new character. So not Phyllis.

LOL, your troll game is superb.

I have been saying this all along. Loved Gina on OLTL, but she is NOT Phyllis. Completely different personality.
However, I cannot truly fault her just because she’s not Michelle. This happens each and every time there is a character change. Especially an actor/actress we love, and are used to his/her idiosyncrasies and nuances. It is what it is. Sometimes the recast works for some of us; sometimes it does not.
Nonetheless, be that as it may; I do not believe Gina portrayed any of Phyllis’s characteristics, regardless of her quasi ‘good’ performance. She cannot compare to the other four, in my humble estimation.

And I bet you if Gina Tognoni even tried to mimic how Michelle portrayed the character of Phyllis, there would be many fans and viewers (alike) that would be complaining how “Gina isn’t doing her OWN version, isn’t putting her OWN stock in to the role…” Yada, yada, and yada…

I was watching Y&R yesterday and the scenes with Phyllis and Michael, my mother asked, “Why is she whispering?” I said, “She always does that.”

I am another who wants to love Gina as Phyllis, but her portrayal has just not connected with me. I don’t know why she whispers in scenes when it’s not necessary. Maybe she talks like that IRL. I don’t know. I am a Gina fan, but again, her portrayal of Phyllis has not totally connected with me.

Wow this category is the toughest one to call. Every actress here just delivered bigtime. Every reel was just amazing and outstanding. The best reels i have ever seen in a category. Here is how i would rank them

5: Heather Tom: Tom alwaya acts the hell out of anything and she did so here. Especially the last scenes where she says goodbye to Brooke. She was great my only problem is i have seen her do these scenes before in her other reels. There was nothing daring or gutsy. She played it a little too safe.

4: Jess Walton: The scene where she tells off the whole town is great acting. Her strongest part of the reel. She was strong as well confronting Phyllis. Great stuff bt a great actress. Only problem is she got a bit shouty but great.

3: Nancy Grahn: a 18 minute reel that is not as cohesive but i love all the facets she shows in this reel. Her best part of reel is the stuff with Julian in the end. She goes foe the gusto here.

2: Laura Wright: a 20 minute reel that is so cohesive as it tells a story about Morgans death. Wright was the most subtle of any of the actresses and not as actress showy. It was all powerful stuff and she was the best actress of 2016.

1: Gina Tognoni: had the shortest reel but her reel waa balls to the walls. The stuff with Phyllis on witness stand was phenom.stuff as lays into.Victor for what he did to her. Then loved the subtle scene with her and Billy afterwards. Then she was great with Peter Bergman. I loved how this reel kind of told an arc from Victor violating her to why she had an affair with Billy. Just sublime.

Any of these actresses could win.

Gina is the only actress in the category not dealing with a real life drama…a wife not knowing the difference between her husband and his doppelganger doesn’t make Phyllis sympathetic to the voting panel…it makes her look stupid as sin.

Laura is projecting perfectly the worst loss a mother can endure…the death of a child.

Listen no matter what character actions are all 5 of these actresses gave fantastic reels. Laura was fab she was most subtle of all the reels. Gina on the stand performance was an adrenline rush from beginning to end. It was really i couldnt take my eyes off.

Excellent point, Newmanwins….As GH’s grieving mother, Carly, Laura Wright is far more convincing whilst being sublimely subtle and restrained in expressing her deep sorrow, unlike the more overdone—and sometimes ridiculous or predictable—antics employed by the other drama queens, especially NLG’s plonked-up, faded tart, Alexis….Laura Wright for the win!

Why because she screamed and spit more? Case should have won this hands down the subtle acting always chwated


I adore Case she is always on her game and steps up and takes the blows I adore her

She has never wore a sign saying I am acting please film me

Love Sharon Case, think she is underrated.
I also love Gina’s Phyllis. When she is on, I watch.

Hands down, Nancy Lee Grahn. She was given a real, authentic storyline dealing with the gravity of Alexis’ alcoholism-a real issue that many face and can relate to in some capacity. Also, I watched part of today’s episode while at home for lunch (the Alexis/Julian scenes)-WOW! I just wish TPTB did not ruin this couple by having Julian almost murder his wife. Unfortunately, as usual, I was BORED TO TEARS with Monotone Sam and Jason and then Elizabeth and Franco-UGH.

Laura Wright (Carly) GH ………

1. Laura Wright by far! . 2. Gina Tignoni

Laura nails every single emotion…brilliantly…it’s a twenty minute acting masterpiece.

I was going to pick Heather for the win…but then I watched Laura’s last and was blown away.

gina is as good as Nicole Kidman and other movie stars. Hands down, gina!

I couldn’t agree more, Tony

Easily Gina Tognoni.

The rest of the reels are either too long (Laura), have too much filler (Nancy) or take too long to get to the meaty and dramatic stuff (Jess).

Heather is good but it’s not much different than her usual – pretty similar reels and stories to stuff she has submitted in the past

Gina has the most ridiculous story in the category….voting panel won’t connect with such a ludicrous premise…not knowing the difference between your husband and his doppelganger is a joke…plus her reel is the shortest cause she only had one standout moment…it’s way too much shouty and baity like Sweeney’s two years ago that lost out…doesn’t match up to the overall acting repertoire of Laura or Heather…but still it’s this campy unrelatable Jack/Marco nonsense that will cost her votes.

Are you just going around trolling everyone’s comments to make Laura Wright’s reel look better even though it’s

1. Longer than the legal length for a reel (a reel is not supposed to be more than 20 minutes)
2. It’s boring, takes too long to get to the drama and has too much filler.

And Gina’s reel is the shortest because she knows nobody wants to sit through 20 minutes of repetitive scenes and dialogue (like that of Carly wailing about Morgan).

LOL. Agreed, again, Newmanwins. Who else can know….be most familiarly intimate with a man’s body but his wife? No two beings are exactly the same. Not even identical twins. I should know; I am one. LOL. My identical twin and I are not sooo identical !!
Stupid storyline..poor Gina will pay the price for its insipidness.

Missy, no one needs to make Laura’s reel look better than it is. The quality stands on its own. Good thing you don’t actually vote on the awards. You’re obviously a biased Y&R fan, which is fine. I’m a GH fan, but I can at least acknowledge that Gina and the other nominees did great work. I don’t need to denigrate the work of another actress and whine about a clip being 15 seconds over the limit, which obviously the Emmys didn’t have a problem with, because I want my favorite to win.

Gina was too young for the role but she is every bit plus thousands more the actress Stafford has proven to be that said Gina is playing Phyllis with a angry look 24/7 ! My pick nobody they all over act

Missy, you are right. And yes, Newman is also right when she mandates that the dopelganger story was ridiculous. However, that’s not Gina’s fault and she certainly rose above what was handed to her and made it work.
That’s how good she is.

I, for one, do not bother with reels, Missy. I would not be able to base my opinion on one reel presented by the actor/actress. It would not be enough.
To be fair, Missy, we like whom we like; I like Gina, but, she, as Phyllis, did not grab me. She is too hard!!

I have not been a fan of Nancy’s Alexis until her split with Julian and stint with alcoholism. I made a complete turnabout. For me? Nancy touched the stars.
We were asked what we thought and we opined. We may not agree with each others’ answers, but, c’est la vie!

I like Gina as Phyllis; although, I am rooting for Nancy. I can’t root for Laura. I was not invested in the character of Morgan. I couldn’t stand the actor or the character, so I didn’t feel the emotional tug when the character died. I know the actor won an Emmy for his work; however, I never liked the character and I think the storyline (on mental illness) was too big and serious of a story for him to play.

I did not like Morgan, nor the actor, either, dmr.
But, albeit Nancy is my pick, does not take away from Laura’s performance, as a grieving mother. As I said, I need to be moved, and Laura did that tenfold.
Perhaps, I identified with her loss knowing the void and pain a mother experiences over her child’s death.
Laura was so outstandingly authentic; she broke my heart.
Nonetheless, I saw such an unexpected change in Alexis…..I could not ignore Nancy’s dramatic hold on her scenes and/or on me.

Great summation of what this nomination process argh … leaves me

I’ve barked hollered and begged for TPTB to listen… ie: GH sonny and carly ; GH Jason and Sam; GH Finn and Hayden. absolute scream ( oh the pain ) and dulling of the senses. what a lot of cache’ to hire back… lost talent.

ta da : still prized – Nicholas, Paul, Morgan, Sabrina, and Jeffrey Vincent Parise.. Dr. Joe… just will not die or let up. LOL… YES YES YES… WIN one for the fans

sorry Missy.. back to

Laura Wright 20 plus minutes of just her…. OY the real problem of all that is GH ? I could hardly bear it. I thought it odd.. that she played her reel… as if her nuanced subtle deliveries were real… and that she downplayed how truly histrionic her character reels… just plowing down anyone and everything. just not exciting , is she

to this day… I will forever put a stamp on… the Corinthos clan are no more. without Morgan… they have lost all appeal… watching Michael with no personality .. always the middle man, between his mother and father… is just not cutting it. forever the heart and soul of the dullest family on GH. sans his “romance” with Nelle… this story fell so flat so quickly after the reveal. what a joke… and LOL… I just laugh at the characters of Laura and Sonny play emotion… what caricatures of themselves… think about it.. whenever the reel outside of one another… it’s embarrassing to know that this is the sole focus of the show. Jean and Shelley and Frank have lost .

I really think her REEL nosedived when her 20 plus tired minutes , ended with her bff Jason… as played by billy miller… he has no life in his eyes. as she clung to him… this long drawn out story for emmy nominations for the Corinthos… left the building and dimmed and soured … put these two out to pasture.

sorry Laura Wright… you do not deserve an emmy. outside of this sculpted and maneuvered emmy reel.

the “best” lead actress… belongs to either Nancy Lee Grahn and/or Jess Walton

that being said… I don’t think any of the actress lived up to their potential.. as was stated above… filler really lessens

outside of Gina Tognoni – NOT KNOWING – that the doppelganger wasn’t her husband…. meh? I thought she had the best reel.

All actresses were good. But for me to chose it may come down to the story they were selling, some of which I liked better than others. Very, very tired of Katie, Phyliss/Billy, and Carly. So that would leave Nancy and Jess as exceptional in my eyes.

Laura Wright has easily the best reel…with the most relatable character drama…it’s a tour de force performance.

I am sorry but Heather Tom hands down…6th time’s the charm 🙂

i’m not saying she’s not a good actress but should she win another emmy for Crying? every single emmy reel she submits its crying crying crying, she basically being rewarded for being a good cryer.

Because that is exactly how the reels are judged– if you look over past winners, male or female– the reel that wins is usually the one who cried the best or yelled the loudest– you win for either yelling or crying– subtle performances rarely win and comedic performance never do— if Heather wins this year– your’re right it is because she cried the best– and looked beautiful while doing it — that’s a plus in the Emmy race

Thank you Aria. I did not bother… to watch her.

it just gnaws at you doesn’t it… that after all the decades … years of raw talent… that graced our screens.

that some actors… do not know any better or difference to just pull the plug… what is her emmy wins about ? absolution… that she’s the best crier . one hell of an actor ? dag , right… Susan Lucci delivered. Heather Tom is such a non-entity.

I remember saying at the time when those episodes aired that Laura Wright would be walking away with some more Emmy gold. I still feel that way after watching all the reels.

I was impressed with all of the ladies, however. I watch GH, so I know how consistently great Nancy Lee Grahn is. She would be my second choice. Gina Tognoni, Jess Walton and Heather Tom were all very good as well. Out of all the categories I’ve seen the reels for so far, this category is by far the toughest competition. Any of the five would be deserving winners.

I’ll be rooting for Laura. The pain and sorrow of a mother losing her son that she conveyed through the screen, It touched me very strong emotionally and after watching GH for nearly 25 years, it takes a lot to move me anymore.

This is one fantastic category and a tribute to the talent and endless creativity of daytime performers. Personally, Laura Wright hit me the hardest and deepest with this year’s work. Something about her grief and sorrow just devastates me. But the great thing is, there won’t be any embarrassing wins here.

Gina tognini hands down her reel was that damn good u couldn’t take your eyes off it

Tognoni’s reel reminds me how horrid the Pratt era was. Will voters really be able to take this schlock serious enough to give her a win? That said, GT is a good actress, but terribly miscast as Phyllis. I have yet to connect with her in that part.

Walton’s and Tom’s reels are the strongest. I think it is a toss up between the two of them. While I have deep respect for JW, she was no lead during 2016. For that alone, Tom should take the gold home.

Why are most of u degrading Gina Tognini reel. Her reel was the bomb. Omg really though. Her reel did make sense. A women who didn’t know the difference between a doppleganger and her husband. I’ve known plenty of actors who won Emmy’s for reels that kinda didn’t make since like Anthony Geary’s 2004, 2008, & 2015 wins,

Maura West’s 2015 win (cryptic sex lol) ( I loved her better on atwt as Carly), Jonathan Jackson’s 1995 win (Jason Biggs had a better reel that year), Kimberly McCulloughs 1989 win (Martha bryne n Anne heche had great reels), Justin Gockes 1989 win (Gina’s wheel of Fortune episode), Finola Hughes 1991 win (Anna & The Alien/Casey), just to name a few. It’s more about the performances n the range of it not what u picked. Otherwise none of them would have ever won a Emmy. I remember how people got upset because Drew Tyler Bell, Jen Landon, Tyler Christopher, and Bryton James won Emmy’s. It’s either Heather, Gina, or Nancy, more towards leaning to Gina.

I don’t even have to think about this one Gina Tognini was the best followed by Laura Wright but it will probably be Tom that gets it. I’m kind of sick of her putting her reel in every year. She is a good actress but they need to give the others a chance and I also think sometimes she over acts.

Love Heather Tom but why give others a chance I would n’t Its too bad for them constraints she deserves it.

She deserves it Heather is great

I like Heather Tom alright but when she cries all open mouth, she looks like one of the characters from the Peanuts cartoons.

I like Heather Tom too and I think she’s a great actress but I see her throw her name into the pot every year. Now I know anyone can and then whoever’s in charge picks from the bunch. As in if 50 throw their name and reel I think only a few are picked but I get sick of her being picked all the time from B&B. There are so many others like Quinn, Steffy, Brooke etc. I think after awhile they just don’t bother throwing in their reel. I don’t blame them. Just give her the statue already. It’s like Y & R so many times I think actresses like Sharon Case, Tracey Bregman etc. know who’s going to get it so they don’t bother throwing in their reel. JMO

Not true you must love peanuts

General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Dante is Shot as Jason Reveals Himself

Just how was General Hospital going to reintroduce the character of Jason Morgan to the canvas with the highly-anticipated return of Steve Burton in the pivotal role? Well, why we don’t have all the answers, the show wasted no time, and Burton first appeared at the beginning of the Monday, March 4th episode.

In story, while Sonny (Maurice Benard), Selena (Lydia Look) and Ava (Maura West) are at the warehouse, they are facing off with the FBI and the PCPD when John (Adam J. Harrington), Anna (Finola Hughes), Dante (Dominic Zamprogna), Chase (Josh Swickard) et al show up.  Meanwhile on the roof, a man kneels over a skylight window who pipes up with, “it appears they are late to the party.” It’s then revealed just who the man is talking to, and it turns out it’s JASON!

Meanwhile, John and Anna are questioning Sonny and Selina on what they are doing in the warehouse. Selina says they are planning a poker game. Next, the man with Jason aims his gun at Sonny. However, Jason messes up his shot, but the shot rings out. Inside the warehouse everyone scatters about. They realize the show came from the skylight.

Photo: ABC

Jason tells the other man they’ve been compromised and need to leave the location. Below, in the warehouse, Dante thinks that he and Chase can get onto the roof since the shooter didn’t see them. So, Dante takes off with Chase to find the culprit. In the meantime, John orders a CSI unit. Next, Chase returns and says the building is all clear and Dante is pursuing the suspects.

Now on the pier, Dante catches up with Jason (who’s back is to him) and the other man. Dante orders them to freeze. While the other man gets away, Jason stays put and Dante orders him to turn around slowly with his hands up. Dante is shocked to see its Jason. Confused, Dante says, “What the hell?” Next, the other man returns and fires two shots into Dante’s chest.

Photo: ABC

As Dante goes down, Jason runs over to him. The other man calls Jason “Jacobs” and tell him to leave the cop to die. Jason tells the other man to go to the planned site and he will find another way out. Next, the man attempts to fire at Jason who is hovering over Dante, but Jason shoots at him first and takes him out.

Back at the warehouse, Ava sees a bullet hole in Sonny sleeve, as John says that it confirms that Sonny is the intended target. John and Sonny stare each other down due to their dark past.  It’s clear that Sonny doesn’t trust John and vice-versa.  Anna tells Sonny she is not out to get him and doesn’t want him to die. She adds that Sonny, “Must have had an angel on his shoulder because she doesn’t see how that sniper missed from this range.”

Chase returns to the warehouse having dropped everyone off at the PCPD, but says Dante hasn’t checked in with him. Sonny looks very concerned, as Jason is looking very concerned over Dante’s body.

So, what did you think of the first episode back for Steve Burton as Jason Morgan? Will it be revealed that he has been infiltrating this organization to save Sonny? Does Jason not know his true identify? What do you think is going on?  As for Dante, will he pass out from his injuries and not identify Jason was even there on the roof with him? Comment below.

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General Hospital

Steve Burton Confirms ‘General Hospital’ Head Writer Switch Changed Jason’s Comeback Storyline

General Hospital viewers will see today, Monday, March 4th, the beginnings of the return storyline for Steve Burton and his character of Jason Morgan.

Just how did the recent head writing regime change at GH alter the plans for story for Jason’s comeback? As had been rumored, seems plenty. Back on January 22nd, it was revealed that Chris Van Etten and Dan O’Connor had been replaced by Patrick Mulcahey and Elizabeth Korte. At that time, Burton had already signed-on to return to the daytime drama for the first time since being let go towards the end of 2021.

Speaking with Soap Opera Digest, Steve confirmed that what we will see on-air is from the new head writers and that the direction of the story changed, “So apparently there was a whole different story planned and then the head writer switch happened and then they kind of rebooted (the story arc). I know Patrick (Mulcahey, one of the new head writers) a little bit, but I really know Elizabeth Korte (who was promoted to co-head writer).”

Photo: JPI

Burton added, “There’s no one in the building that loves that show, knows the history of the character, and is invested in it 100 percent than Elizabeth. There has never been a more deserved promotion, ever. Once I know that she was (one of the head writers), I was like, ‘Oh, this is gonna be good! I cannot wait.’ And it has been exactly that. Everything has been amazing.”‘

Photo: JPI

In addition, during an Instagram live on Monday with his podcast and comedy show partner, GH star, Bradford Anderson (Spinelli), Burton also commented on the upcoming story arc which brings Jason back to Port Charles. Steve expressed, “The story is not going to disappoint. The scenes are super deep. Frank (Valentini, EP, GH)  and the new head writers took some time to really think this out.”

Burton, being a longtime veteran of the soaps, said Jason’s return is not just isolated to be about him. “Great story on daytime should involve a myriad of people across the board and where it effects everybody,” he shared. The popular fan favorite feels that this story delivers on all levels.

So, what do you think about the head writer change and how it prompted the plans for Jason’s return? Comment below.


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Days Of Our Lives

Jason Cook Recalls Landing His Soap Roles as DAYS Shawn-Douglas Brady and GH’s Matt Hunter

Daytime fans remember Jason Cook when he became wildly-popular as Hope (Kristian Alfonso) and Bo’s (Peter Reckell) son, Shawn-Douglas Brady on Days of our Lives from 1999-2006. He later made a brief return in the role in 2015 for the series 50th anniversary.

After departing DAYS, Cook was offered a role on General Hospital as Dr. Matt Hunter, the younger brother to Dr. Patrick Drake (Jason Thompson) from 2008-2012. However, during his time on the soaps, and after, Cook has been focusing on his behind the scenes roles and passion as writer and a director of feature films.

Last week, the Michael Fairman Channel welcomed Jason, along with two of the stars of his latest film, Four for Fun, Brytni Sarpy (Elena, Y&R) and Jacob Young (ex-AMC, B&B, GH). During the conversation, Cook revealed his continued admiration for the soap medium and the actors who work in it, and how it came to pass that he landed his parts on Days of our Lives, and then on General Hospital.

Photo: JPI

Cook spoke on becoming the on-screen son of soap opera’s most iconic couples, Bo and Hope: “I auditioned for Fran Bascom. She was the Days of our Lives casting director at the time. I was never a great auditioner, I don’t think. She made me feel really comfortable. I remember that screen test. And then, I remember when I got the part, I was actually working at a company at a desk job. I got the call at work and I just screamed, and at the time I didn’t quit my job. But then, I got that contract when I was 19-years-old and it totally changed my life.”

Photo: JPI

But, was Jason aware how key to the show being Bo and Hope’s son would be? “Yeah, my older sister was a fan of the show. She definitely let me know that I better not mess it up, because I was gonna ruin her favorite couple,” he shared. “I remember she printed out the family tree and it looked like a physics diagram. It was so complicated. A lot of detailed work went into it. But, I was excited.”

After being a known entity with a large fan following, eventually Cook made his way to a new role on General Hospital. Jason explained, “GH was fun. That was a situation where Brian Frons (ex-ABC Daytime President) brought me over there. I just told him I didn’t want to be like or want to do Shawn. He’s like, ‘Well, what do you wanna do?’ I said, ‘How can I screw things up around here and shake things up?'”

Photo: JPI

From that conversation things began to formulate. Cook revealed, “We started talking about the TV series House. I think in soaps, there’s an assumption if you’re going on a show that everybody wants to be the hero. I was like, ‘I don’t want to (be). I want to screw everything up.’ And then, they wrote it in that Matt Hunter burns the hospital down within like six months. I was like really proud about that. The other part that I loved about that character is that Matt, and his older brother Patrick (Jason Thompson), were both neurosurgeons. And if you (an actor) resigned your contract (with the show) you go to Patrick, you see Patrick. And if you don’t resign your contract, you see my character, because my character was going to kill you every time.”

For more on the interview, make sure to check out the replay of the livestream conversation below with Jason, Brytni Sarpy and Jacob Young.  Now let us know, did you enjoy Jason as Shawn-D and Matt on GH? Do you hope someday he might return on-screen to the soaps? Let us know in the comment section.

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Peter Reckell returns for a second visit with Michael Fairman following the wrap-up of his recent run as Bo Brady on Days of our Lives.Leave A Comment

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Days of our Lives

Airdate: 7-24- 2023