Keys & Concerts: Jen on the US Chess Champs
By Jennifer Shahade   
May 28, 2014
Gata Kamsky and Irina Krush, 2014 US Champions

The 2014 US Chess Championships and US Women’s Championships featured the most thrilling finale I’ve ever seen in both my own years of playing and in my six years of hosting and chairing the US Championships.

After a series of twists and turns in both events, each ended in three-way ties for first. Though Gata Kamsky and Irina Krush both ended up retaining their thrones, the race to the top of American chess is clearly getting fiercer. See Brian Jerauld’s full report for games and details.
Photo Lennart Oots

The World Chess Hall of Fame  across the street hosted a number of exciting events, including a recreation of Marcel Duchamp’s famous musical match against John Cage from 1968. I also participated in a Reunion rendition in 2010 in Toronto (where the match was originally staged.)

Photo S. Carmody for WCHOF

The Hall of Fame has been hosting regular concerts, and this combination of chess match and concert was a hit with the chess participants as well as local art afficianados.  

Curator Larry List shows GMs Akobian & Sargissian (Chicago Open Champ) an installation by Glenn Kaino, Photo S. Carmody for WCHOF

The event was part of Kaino & Cage as curated by Larry List

Getting to the heart of the Chess Club’s mission, as well as my own work, we also had a great field trip with girl scouts at Ballpark Village, right outside the Cardinals Stadium. The festivities included a human chess game and bullet games by GMs Robert Hess and Ben Finegold, commentated by GM Maurice Ashley.     



In a perfect crowning moment for the Championships. Rex and Jeanne Sinquefield received the keys to the city from Mayor Francis Slay in recognition of all they’ve done for the city.

STL Chess Club Executive Director Tony Rich, Mayor Slay, Rex & Jeanne Sinquefield

After a standing ovation, Jeanne also announced that the club had arranged for free membership to the Internet Chess Club (ICC) for any Saint Louis Public School student grade K-8. Find out more details on the honor and the program here.
Jen Shahade and Jean Hoffman

USCF & the STL Chess Club have agreed to host the 2015 events at the STL Chess Club as well. Let’s make it seven!

Follow all the exciting news at the Saint Louis Chess Club and World Chess Hall of Fame, including a GM invitational this weekend.