Chess Programs & Events

A/ Chess in Culture
B/ Pop-Up Chess Club at Work 
C/ Simultaneous Chess Exhibitions

“Tactics is knowing what to do when there is something to do;
strategy is knowing what to do when there is nothing to do.”

– Savielly Tartakower

A/ Chess in Culture
– 90 mins
– 6 to 20 participants
– Price on request

Ideal for Secondary School Transition year classes or adult groups, the Chess in Culture program provides an entertaining and stimulating snapshot of the important role that chess has played down through the ages in politics, government, art, literature, cinema, commerce and technology. Each 90 mins session is divided into two parts. The first involves a short multimedia lecture on a theme such as ‘Chess and Politics’ followed by a group discussion. Each lecture considers chess in a larger historical and cultural context, exploring how the game has entered and influenced and continues to impact virtually every facet of contemporary life. There will be plenty of close readings of texts that feature chess and excerpts from feature films where the Royal Game adds to the drama, not to mention anecdotes and pithy observations from historical and fictional entities galore.

“Holmes: A five minute game?
Moriarty: If you think you can manage it.
Holmes: We both have two bishops. I may be absent from the room but my methods are not.
Moriarty: You can’t mean Dr. Watson, surely. That doesn’t seem fair.”
– From Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows Dir. Guy Ritchie

After the group discussion concludes, in the second part, we get down to the business of Mark’s beginners course drawing on the games of famous historical figures. You will learn all the chess basics in addition to analysing the games of historical figures such as Napoleon, Karl Marx, Humphrey Bogart and Marcel Duchamp amongst others. 

What conclusions can we draw about Karl Marx from his predeliction for the King’s Gambit? Is Marx’s carefree romantic chess style and willingness to sacrifice material reconcilable with the economic theories he espouses in Das Kapital? Where did it all go wrong for Murphy in Samuel Beckett’s novel of the same name? ‘How much ‘chess nous’ can we really gain from movies such as ‘The Luzhin Defence’ (2000) and ‘Pawn Sacrifice’ (2014). 

Following the lesson, the members of the group will take part in a friendly all-play-all competition with trophies and medals for the winners at the end of the course.

Mark’s Literary Background

A published author and literary critic, IM Mark Quinn holds a PhD in Modern American Literature and was a Tutor and Junior Lecturer in the School of English, Drama and Film during the course of his PhD from 2005-2010. For an example of Mark’s literary criticism click on the following link to view an article on Thomas Pynchon’s Encyclopedic Novel Gravity’s Rainbow (1973).
Seeing the Wood for the Trees


B/ Pop-up Chess Club at Work

– 60 mins
– 6 to 20 participants
– Price on request

Have you always wanted to play chess but never found the time? Would you like to spend a productive hour avoiding traffic after work on a Tuesday evening? Or is it time to inject Wednesday lunchtimes with a fun-filled activity where everyone in the office can join in? If so our Pop-up Chess Club could be the right fit for you and your work colleagues.

“The beauty of chess is it can be whatever you want it to be. It transcends language, age, race, religion, politics, gender, and socio-economic background. Whatever your circumstances, anyone can enjoy a good fight to the death over the chess board.”

– Grandmaster Simon Williams , Ginger GM

How it works

Once a week, at the time that best suits your company, the Pop-up Chess Club will meet at your place of work. The hour long session will consist of a twenty-minute lesson using a demonstration board or power point followed by a club competition – one game per week. The lessons will be conducted by International Master Mark Quinn who will also keep a close eye on the games played, so as to help club members learn from their own mistakes or celebrate their victories! Chess Bud Ireland will provide all the necessary chess equipment and set-up in advance of the club meeting, so employees can return directly to work after lunch or head home in the evening.

The Pop-up Chess Club is a novel and fun team-building activity that invests in you and your staff’s future well-being – while making the most of that most valuable of commodities – your disposable free time. If you’re bored of surfing the internet during lunch or sitting in traffic straight after work, give Chess Bud Ireland a call. Go on, make the first move!


C/ Simultaneous Chess Exhibitions

Have you ever wanted to take on an IM? Are you part of a club that would like to even the odds? Mark has given many simultaneous chess exhibitions with lectures over the years. Contact him today to find out more. Price on request. 

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