Garry Kasparov judges The Hardcore Is More Than Music Chess TournamentRead more about the event in The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/society/2007/apr/09/communities.booksonhealth
Back in february 2007 I was running an Arts Programme at The Stowe Youth Centre and one week I remember that the young people were sitting really quietly- unusually quietly- in the chill out zone playing chess. And then, every night they kept trying to persuade us to keep the youth centre open for an extra half an hour so they could finish their games. Everyone would crowd round the board and there were all these back seat chess players telling the two players how to move. So we ended up getting another set and another little chess crew sprung up.
David Howell, the 16 year old chess prodigy from Eastbourne was in the news because he had just been made a Grandmaster. So Nina and I decided it would be amazing to put on a chess tournament for the young people and ask David Howell to play against the young people.
As the project grew, London Chess Centre donated 10 chess sets and lent us timers and they mentioned that Garry Kasparov would be in London in April promoting his new book 'How Life Imitates Chess'. Suddenly we were gripped with the idea, what if Kasparov could come and launch the tournament? Rachel Williams at the BBC Culture Show was able to help us to bring Kasparov to open the tournament as she was commissioned to make a film to be screened on Saturday May 1st about our project.
Garry Kasparov opened the HARDCORE IS MORE THAN MUSIC CHESS TOURNAMENT at Stowe Youth Centre on April 4th 2007. There were 16 entrants aged between 11 and 20 years old. The Prizes were donated by Mark Chamberlain at Size? trainer shop, Uptown Records, Maurice Ashley the Black-American Grandmaster donated signed copies of his Speedchess DVD and book, Garry Kasparov gave each young person a signed copy of his new book and Nando’s gave 25 roast chicken and chips for refreshments.
We were really lucky to get Andy Hayler from the West London Chess Centre to act as the arbiter over four stages of the knockout competition.
Ashley Andrews won the gold medal, Angel won the silver and Colm won the bronze. DJ Cameo of 1XTRA presented the medals.
The event was filmed by the BBC Culture Show. Other press includes a feature in the G2 (The Guardian) by Stephen Moss and a news piece in The Voice Newspaper by Maxine Myers.
Special thanks to Michael Dipple and Louise McNestrie and Matthew at London Chess Centre.