Saturday, March 24, 2012

March 24th

Василий Николаевич Платов (24-03-1881 - 17-07-1952) Russian composer (Vasily Nikolayevich Platov)

Vasily Nikolayevich Platov

The Platov brothers (Vasily and Mikhail) were two Latvian endgame study composers who followed Troitzky's steps. They collaborated with the great magazines of their time - Shakhmaty, 64. They published two collections of their studies: "Сборник шахматных этюдов/Sammlung der Endspielstudien" in 1914 and "Сборник шахматных этюдов" in 1928. Vasily also published a selection of contemporary studies "150 избранных современных этюдов" in 1925.
Timothy G. Whitworth wrote the reference book "The Platov Brothers" in 1994.

One of their most famous studies is this one and you may want to check it, but let's choose another one, composed 4 years earlier and sent to the same newspaper "Rigaer Tageblatt":

Платов, Михаил Николаевич & Платов, Василий Николаевич
Rigaer Tageblatt, 1905
3rd Prize

+ 7 + 6

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Ferdinand Metzenauer (24-03-1908 - 05-03-1968) German composer

Ferdinand Metzenauer
[Kartothek L-Z page 15]

Ferdinand Metzenauer composed beautiful threemovers. He defined the Munich theme, which you can find explained here in German with an example from Metzenauer's works.
The following threemover appeared also in the FIDE Album:

Metzenauer, Ferdinand
Die Schwalbe, 1934
1st Prize

#3 9 + 7

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Василий Васильевич Смыслов (24-03-1921 - 27-03-2010) Russian otb GM, World Champion and composer (Vasily Vasilyevich Smyslov)

Vasily Smyslov [Wikipedia]

Beside being the 7th chess World Champion, Vasily Smyslov was also International Judge - since 1957. He composed many studies, collaborated with Grigory Levenfish for "Rook Endings" in 1971 (see March 9th) and wrote in 1997 "Endgame Virtuoso"

Смыслов, Василий Васильевич
Шахматы в СССР 1938
4th Prize

= 6 + 7

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Roger Missiaen (24-03-1925 - 19-06-2018) Belgian composer

Roger Missiaen
‎Бондаренко Ф. Галерея шахматных этюдистов. М., 1968
[Thanks to Александр Никитин]

Roger Missiaen composed about a hundred compositions, many of which were of a very high quality. He wrote together with Ignace Vandecasteele and Julien Vandiest "Flemish miniatures. 123 chess endgame studies" in 1998. He also composed moremovers, but we chose an endgame study:

Missiaen, Roger
WCCT2 Ty, 1981
5th Prize

= 4 + 7

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Юрій Маркович Гордіан (24-03-1937 - 08-01-2024) Ukrainian composer and International Master (Yuri Gordian)

Yuri Gordian

He was the son of Soviet fairy composer Mark Filipovich Gordian. He was the chief editor of the Ukrainian magazine "Problemist Ukrainy" and author of about 250 problems and one of the main pillars of strong Ukrainean composition school. He gained many points for his country in WCCT.
Sergey Tkachenko wrote a nice article in homage to Yuri Gordian in [broken link].

Сорока, Іван Іванович & Гордіан, Юрій Маркович
diagrammes, 1992
1st Prize

s#3 8 + 9

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Christopher John Feather (24-03-1947) British composer and helpmate/fairy expert

Chris Feather

For the reader who does not know Chris Feather, reading his very short autobiography on Kobulchess is a must.

From it you will learn that Chris, one of the very best composers of helpmates in the world, who recently completely turned to fairy problems, is not interested in prizes or titles. For this reason he has not sent his problems to the FIDE Album. While other composers similarly neglecting the Album honours are self-centered and autarchic, on the contrary Chris generously provides fellow composers with excellent advice, profitable hints and considerable enjoyment through his self-produced magazine Fairings.

He coined the term HOTF(Helpmate Of The Future), which is best represented by the forever green following helpmate:

Feather, Christopher John
The Problemist, 1979
1st Prize

h#24.1... 10 + 10

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Chithathur Gopalan Sathya Narayanan (24-03-1947) Indian composer and International Master

C.G.S. Narayanan
[The Hindu Photo Credit: R. Ravindran]

Narayanan is famous for his amazing double in 4th 2nd WCCT: 4th place and 5th place with problems that got directly in the FIDE Album!
C.G.S.Narayanan or CGSN as he is referred to by his friends, is an expert in orthodox two- and threemovers. He won the prestigious Brian Harley award a total of four times. In the 1990s he started the only Indian problem magazine called "Cross-check". He ran a regular column on problem solving for almost twenty years in the newspaper "The Hindu". He has also organized solving contests in Chennai and has mentored a number of young enthusiasts (for instance o.t.b GM Karthikeyan Murali). For the blog we selected another amazing achievement: 4th degree defence of bB in #3 (by the way, Miodrag Mladenovic published in the Summer issue of MatPlus Review 2007 a very interesting article about Nth degree black correction in 3# and other commented problems can be found on Mat Plus forum)

Narayanan, C. G. Sathya
StrateGems, 1998
2nd Prize

#3 11 + 12

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Radovan Šulc (24-03-1965) Czech composer

Radovan Šulc is present in this selection for his funny and entertaining following fairy problem:

Dragoun, Michal & Šulc, Radovan
Šachová skladba, 1990

b) Condition MirrorCirce
c) Condition PWC
d) Condition CouscousCirce
2 + 4

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橋本 哲 (24-03-1957) Japanese composer (Satoshi Hashimoto)

Satoshi Hashimoto (left) with Michel Caillaud, Kobe 2012
Michel is wearing a t-shirt showing Satoshi's proof game in 8 moves.
Can you solve it?
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Satoshi Hashimoto has composed 20 tsume-shogi problems and around 100 chess problems. Most of these are proof games and he has published a collection of his best works: "64 Proof Games" (Paradise Books 10, 2012), a must have for fans of retrograde analysis.
Here is an example of his talent:

Hashimoto, Satoshi
StrateGems (P0322) 2011
2nd Prize

PG 25 14 + 15

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  1. Indeed that was an amazing achievement. I was fortunate to be with him (as team leader) when those problems were being finished. It was the 2nd WCCT (not 4th).

    1. Lucky you !
      Thanks for the observation: that's another corrected mistake.

  2. Recently Roger Missiaen from Belgium died on 19.6.2018 too.
    Julien Vandiest and Ignace Vandecasteele are already dead!
    Very sad that in a few years the 3 major Belgian study -composers passed away