Opening ceremony and theatrical performances of 2008 Pearl Spring Tournament in Nanjing, China

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Nanjing participants and details

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2008 Pearl Spring Tournament, Nanjing, China, will kicked off on December 10th evening in Nanjing Culture and Art Center. The ceremony featured many famous guests. The chief Chinese leaders attending the ceremony are as follows: Xu Jialu, former Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress; Xiao Min, Assistant Director of General Administration of Sports of China and Vice Chairman of Chinese Olympic Committee; Ding Jiemin, the deputy director of Jiangsu People’s Representative Standing Committee; Jiang Hongkun, mayor of Nanjing; Jin Shi, deputy director of Nanjing People’s Representative Standing Committee. The honorable foreign guests present in the ceremony will be Liang Zhirong, Secretary-general of FIDE; Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifah Al Nahyan, President of Asian Chess Federation; Boris Kutin, President of the European Chess Union. Besides, many other distinguished guests are also present, such as the leaders concerning the General Administration of Sports of China, Jiangsu province and Nanjing city; honored guests from FIDE, the European Chess Union, the Asian Chess Federation and social organizations – in total about 1000 people.

In tonight’s opening ceremony speaches were given by Jiang Hongkun, mayor of Nanjing; Xiao Min, Assistant Director of General Administration of Sports of China and Vice Chairman of Chinese Olympic Committee and Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifah Al Nahyan, President of Asian Chess Federation. The chess grandmasters also made their attending speeches and were welcomed by the guests.

The draw of colors and pairings took place as well. Casto Abundo, the superior judge of this tournament and the Vice President of Asian Chess Federation presided the draw and announced the results. Round 1 will see Levon Aronian – Veselin Topalov, Vassily Ivanchuk – Peter Svidler, and Sergei Movsesian – Bu Xiangzhi.

Centering on the theme “Play Chess in Nanjing, Spread Friendship World Wide”, the theatrical performance consisted of ten programs: Children’s Folk Dance (the Lion Dance, and Fashion Show), Fragrant Jasmine and Beautiful Brocade (Symphony of Chinese Folk Musical Instruments), Reflections of Red Mansion (Children’s Song and Dance), Chessboard with 64 Squares (Girls’ Quartet) Pearl Welcomes Guests, a Beijing Opera excerpt (Farewell My Concubine), Ring Dances from the south of the Yangtze River, Dance, Martial Arts, and Acrobatics. The ceremony finished with a song by Riverside Pearl: Green Homeland. The opening ceremony and the theatrical performances aim to enhance international cultural exchanges, show Nanjing’s profound cultural deposits and rich humanity resources as a famous historical and cultural city, express Nanjing citizen’s warm welcome and sincere hope of meeting friends and knowing each other through chess playing, announced the hosts from the city of Nanjing.

Expect more details!

The 38th Chess Olympiad has been officially opened

Dresden 2008 Olympiad games start tomorrow

Only two weeks after Vishy Anand became World Champion in Bonn, we are going to witness another big chess event in Germany. The start of the 38th Chess Olympiad has been given at the opening ceremony in Dresden today. The hall looked impressive, full of representatives of a record number of participating nations and a crowd of journalists.

Very similar to the Beijing Olympics model, the Olympiad in Dresden started at 8:08. One after the other on the scene came singers, cheerleaders, ice skaters, drum bangers, and many more performances. Every country in the Dresden Olympiad was represented by German school children in the Opening Ceremony. All of the children who carried the flags and country names are chess players who qualified to be at the opening ceremony through a series of tournaments.

More details later tonight, join us tomorrow for live coverage of the 2008 Dresden Olympiad on!

Kirsan Ilymzhinov could not attend the opening ceremony in Dresden

The FIDE President Kirsan Ilymzhinov could not attend the opening ceremony. As many Russian sources informed his car was involved into a car accident on the way to the airport. The reports state that Mr. Ilymzhinov did not suffer important injuries. The Chessdom team wishes him a fast recovery.

Photos from the opening ceremony

All photos by our good friend Susan Polgar.

chess olympiad press conference

The press conference before the opening ceremony where all the details were explained

chess olympiad cheerleaders

The Olympiad was opened by a cheerleaders show

chess olympiad songs

Followed by “We will rock you” and “We are the Champions”

chess olympiad skating

A smoking ice skating show for the audience

chess olympiad press songs

More songs followed in the opening ceremony

chess olympiad press songs

Why not a combination of all of the above!

chess olympiad campomanses

FIDE Honorary President Campomanes welcoming the players on behalf of FIDE President Ilyumzhinov

chess olympiad olympiad

Let the Olympiad begin!

chess olympiad playing hall

The first round of the Chess Olympiad starts tomorrow in this fantastic playing hall

World Women Chess Championship starts today

fresh information about the WWCC in Nalchik

Information about the World Women Chess Championship

Official website

Statements: Kirsan Ilymzhinov / Boris Kutin / Arsen Kanokov

General information / Pairings round 1



Mt. Elbrus, the highest peak in Europe
very near the WWCC

Today in Nalchik (Kabardino Balkaria) starts the World Women Chess Championship, of which is official media partner. 53 players from 29 countries will participate. Among them will be the world champion Xu Yuhua, the ex world champion Antoaneta Stefanova, the women rating leader Humpy Koneru, and the leader of the Russian team Alexandra Kosteniuk. Pairings of round 1 are already known and the exciting clashes will start on August 29th.

Despite the difficult disputes around the political situation in the region, the Organizing Committee managed to meet all conditions by FIDE on time. The FIDE commission has inspected the site and has given the definite green light for the championship.

Today, August 28th, is the opening ceremony of the World Women Chess Championship. On one of the biggest concert stages in Russia, the Green Theater in Nalchik, will be the official part of the ceremony. There will be welcome messages by the vice President of Russia and President of the Russian Chess Federation Alexander Zhukov, by the President of FIDE Kirsan Ilymzhinov, and the President of Kabardino Balkaria Arsen Kanokov.

On the next day, August 29th, games will start at 15:00 local time (13:00 CET). The first moves will be by the official guests. will have direct transmission from Nalchik with live chat, interviews, many photos, and information updated every hour. The live games will be on the official page and the later stages will be commented live on Chessdom as well. Games in Nalchik will be commented by GM Evgeny Vasiukov.

Everything at the hotel “Sindica” is reported to be ready for round 1. Banners with chess symbols and words of greeting meet the guests at the entrance to the town. The largest of them is hung on the facade of the Musical Theater. Intour hotel “Sindica” will become a chess club for the period of carrying out of the championship.

The square in front of the hotel is decorated with the flags of the participating countries; a large poster with the Championship symbols and greetings meets the guests in the foyer. The hall of the restaurant is refitted as a chess playing ground. According to the rules of FIDE the floor is covered with carpets, the tables have been changed and arranged in a certain order. Electronic chess boards and plates with the names of participants as well as camera-recorders for live broadcasting have been set there. The restaurant has been moved to the terrace. The Press-Center of the Championship has also been equipped according to the requirements of the FIDE. It is situated in the small conference hall of the hotel, from where we will be reporting.

The Women World Chess Champion for 2008 will be know on September 18th. The new chess queen will receive a crown with 46 diamonds and 3 large sapphires

Stay tuned for updates!

nalchik 2008 nalchik 2008

The logo and the talisman
high quality images of them in the Chessdom photo gallery

North Urals Cup 2008 super women tournament has started

by Anna Burtasova

north urals cup

On the 26th of July 2008 the opening ceremony of the “North Urals Cup 2008” took place. The concert hall of Krasnoturinsk was full of warm emotions. The organizers prepared a magnificent concert of local groups for the participants and the audience. Slide shows about Krasnoturinsk, the tournament and the wonderful people living here were demonstrated on screens on both sides of the stage.

The drawing procedure took place during the ceremony. Participants had to choose the box they liked most of all among those that were brought to the stage by girls-drummers. In every box there was a number that would correspond to each player in the tournament table. The Chief Arbiter of the tournament Ashot Vardapetyan announced the results.

They are as follows:

Cramling – Muzychuk

Xu Yuhua – Sebag

Koneru – Stefanova

Pogonina – Ushenina

north urals cup ushenina

Anna Ushenina

north urals cup pia cramling

Pia Cramling

Andrey Selivanov emphasized that he and Anatoly Sysoev decided to create a women super tournament 6 years ago because there were just a few chess competitions for women and this situation appeared to them extremely unfair.

Participants are glad to come to the hospitable Ural land again. “People here are very friendly and the Ural is the place where I am so lucky”, said the current world champion Xu Yuhua. Answering the question to play with whom men or women is more interesting, Antoaneta Stefanova, who takes part in great deal of men competitions, said that it was easier to play with men. But at the same time she considers victories in women tournaments her main achievements. Anna Muzychuk who on the contrary mostly plays in women tournaments shares her opinion.

Pia Cramling shared her impressions, “It’s my first time here. When I got the proposal to participate in the “North Urals Cup” I didn’t hesitate at all and agreed because it is the strongest women tournament in the world!”

The Russian player Natalya Pogonina was welcomed with a storm of applause. She confessed without false modesty that her aim was to become the first in the tournament. And that’s right! Every sportsman must aim at the best results. Evidently other participants hold to the same opinion. And it means that we are in front of exciting rounds, tense struggle and unpredictable results.

north urals cup anna muzychuk

Anna Muzychuk

north urals cup xu yuhua

Xu Yuhua

north urals cup stefanova

Pogonina and Stefanova

north urals cup koneru humpy

Humpy Koneru

It is indeed the strongest women chess competition. We are surely in front of bright tournament. And it has started!

Photos and report by Anna Burtasova,

Press-attache of the “North Urals Cup 2008”


Quotes from the press conference of North Urals Cup

Alexander Levin, “On behalf of the Governor I greet all the organizers who managed to keep this wonderful tournament at this difficult time. The 19 FIDE category is not the limit for the “North Urals Cup” and we hope that once it will reach the highest 20 category”.

Andrey Selivanov, “This is the main super tournament of the year. A lot of world leading chess players would like to participate in the “North Urals Cup”. This tournament served as an example for many other countries. Now similar competitions are held in Baku and Istanbul. The world championship will be soon in Nalchik. I am sure that the future world champion is now sitting in this hall”.

Ivan Gramatik, “This tournament gave the great impulse to the chess development in Sverdlovsk region”