American Chess Magazine Issue 20

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The cover of the issue #20 features another hero from the Queen’s Gambit – Thomas Brodie-Sangster (a.k.a. Benny Watts). Beth Harmon has become our chess darling, but who is Benny Watts – rogue or Romeo?! What’s the relationship between Beth and Benny? How difficult was it for an English actor to perform with a southern American accent?

In a lengthy interview that follows, Thomas was kind enough to answer these questions, but also to talk about the filming of the series and to share some of his behind the scenes experiences as well as his personal connections to chess.

American Chess Magazine recently conducted a survey among its readership on whether or not the hype generated by the Queen’s Gambit is only momentary. The results are given in our “Readers Voices” column which presents extensive coverage of the lively feedback received. All in all, the ACM editors want to play their part in trying to keep the momentum of the current chess boom going for as long as possible, because chess is our beloved game and the reason why this magazine was started in the first place.

In issue #19, the U.S. Champion GM Wesley So thoroughly analyzed two of his games, with the emphasis on his clash with runner-up GM Jeffery Xiong. Now we present a kind of mirror image follow-up as Jeffery here offers his own view of that same game as well as commenting on a few more of his encounters in what was his best performance at a U.S Championship so far.

GM Illia Nyzhnyk recently won the very strong SPICE Cup Open, one of those rare over-the-board tournaments held in the USA during the coronavirus pandemic. Well-known as a highly practical player, Nyzhnyk offers his analysis and commentary which will certainly be of value to many ambitious players in their endeavor to make progress, while also being appreciated by chess fans of all strengths of play in gaining an understanding of the intricacies of a real-time over-the-board chess battle.

With regard to openings, GM Alex Mista has prepared a complete repertoire for White in tackling the Scandinavian Defense, one of those openings that many dislike facing in their games. In addition, there is a new column in ACM on the historical genesis of openings and their names, presented by our new contributor Patrick McCartney.

Speaking of new faces in this issue, we are happy to introduce a 14-year-old multi-talented young man – national master Grayson Rorrer, who reports on a fantastic comeback which enabled GM John Burke to win the 2020 U.S. Junior Championship. ACM’s avowed intent to present young and talented players (and writers!) has brought us to 10-year-old Oliver Boydell who has already published his own chess book! At the other end of the spectrum, experienced English Professor, Alexis Levitin, has written a short story about the bond established between father and son through their rivalry on the chessboard.

GM Vladimir Belous’ extensive work shines a spotlight on the middlegame strategies of the always popular King’s Indian Defense, while GM Peter Prohaszka takes us back 50 years for a fresh look at an incredible endgame accompanied by his own in-depth analysis and discoveries.

With regular columns – GM Aagaard’s All-Round Training, Chess Tech by Jon Edwards, Book Reviews by FM Carsten Hansen, Chess Puzzles and ACM excerpts from 1897, another ACM issue of fully-packed chess content will provide you hours of reading and fun. As a cherry on the top, the guest in our “5x5 Where Grandmasters Advise Young Players” is U.S. Junior Champion, twice U.S. Olympic Team Captain, successful chess coach and writer – the legendary U.S. Grandmaster John Fedorowicz.

100 pages per issue | Six-times-a-year Award-winning print magazine

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