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Trosman Memorial Simul Becomes an Annual Event Print E-mail
By Elina Cotler   
December 25, 2013
Lily Faerman, Irina Krush and Elina Cotler at the Trosman Memorial
It’s rare to meet a person who is devoted to his profession as resolutely as Mikhail Trosman was dedicated to teaching chess. GM Irina Krush, who began taking lessons with Mikhail when she was nine years old and trained with him until she was nearly an IM, recalls that “Mikhail was not just looking at coaching as a job but as a vocation.”

While Irina and some of Mikhail’s other students across the globe continue to play chess professionally, those who’ve pursued other fields also realize the tremendous positive impact that Mikhail had on their development. Mikhail was interested in his students’ progress and proud of their achievements beyond the chess arena, providing them with life lessons and showing through his own example, what it is to be a  dedicated, professional, responsible and caring person.

The Trosman Memorial Simul was established as a way to celebrate this man and provide inspiration to children and teens to follow their interests in chess and beyond.

On Sunday, December 8th, the Marks JCH of Bensonhurst in Brooklyn, New York hosted the 2nd Annual Trosman Memorial Chess Simultaneous Exhibition, paving the ground for the event to become an annual tradition. While the inaugural simul last year took place with 20 participants on the eve of Hurricane Sandy, this year’s event drew 30 players and coincided with the first snow day in New York City. Irina Krush was joined by the author to play against the participants and both managed to hold their own against the challengers, who included Mikhail’s grandson Mark Trosman. While playing, participants solved problems that arose on the board and listened to advice on their game and challenges in chess and other facets of life.

This year’s event marked Irina’s first appearance as a Grandmaster, and the” J” presented her with a hand-made artwork portraying the Brooklyn Bridge as a symbol of her Brooklyn origins.  Irina was very touched and recalled her weekly childhood travels over the Brooklyn Bridge to the weekend chess tournaments at the Marshall Chess Club.

Irina provided the participants with context on what it meant for her to be a GM - the first US female player to earn the GM title and one of fewer than 50 women in the world who are GMs. After her first norm came at the Mayor’s Cup in NYC more than 10 years ago, she continued to persevere and work on her chess and this year she earned two more GM norms and the GM title. Irina’s goal is to continue to improve her chess and become a stronger GM while playing for more prestigious titles to add to her impressive and growing collection. Her advice to participants was to pursue their interest in chess by working hard and seeking the help of strong mentors as she had with Mikhail Trosman.

Many thanks to Alex Budnitsky, the Marks JCH Executive Director and Julia German, Marks JCH Program Coordinator, for hosting the event and to all the players and families who participated in the Trosman Memorial Chess Simultaneous Exhibition for making it happen.


August - Chess Life Online 2014

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