9 Queens: Empowerment through Chess

9 Queens is dedicated to empowering individuals and communities through chess by making the game fun, exciting, and accessible.


2012 National Chess Day

October 16, 2012

We had a blast celebrating National Chess Day with Bookmans! National Master Amanda Mateer took on 25 people in the simultaneous exhibition- winning 22 games and drawing 3. We also had free chess lessons, face painting and cupcakes for all the participants. Thanks to Jeff Smith for the beautiful photos!


Picture 1 of 9

Categories: Uncategorized

August 16 Chess Night @ Bookman’s on Ina

July 5, 2012

Can you solve the August puzzle of the month?  Black to move and mate in three.

Bring your solution to Bookman’s on Ina, Thursday August 16, 6:30-8:30 pm and win a prize. Join us for a game of chess. All skill levels and ages welcome. If you want to learn to play we will show you how.

Be cool and take a chance to beat your opponent while beating the heat.  See you there!

Categories: Chess Event

Beating the boys

June 5, 2012

“The first time you stick it to a boy that’s when you really get inspired to get going.”

-St Louis chess coach Carrie Lax

This US Chess Scoop video interviews female chess players and coaches talking about how they learned to play chess, why they love the game, and how we can get more women involved. I love this piece not only because there is a nice plug for our book Play Like A Girl, but also because it features a diverse group of women talking honestly about their experiences in the chess world.

Categories: video / Women in chess

9 Queens gets a makeover

May 31, 2012

After spending five years working to change the face of chess, we finally decided it was time to treat ourselves…to a total website makeover! For the past six months, we have been working with Dennis Fesenmyer from Fezlab and Ian Johnson from MoiaGroup to redesign 9Queens.org. We are thrilled to launch the new site and pretty proud of our new duds. In addition to the spiffy new design, there are a couple of features we created specifically for the 9 Queens community.


They include:

Calendar- This is your place to find upcoming 9 Queens events and workshops.

Learn to Play-  Features a preview of the 9 Queens passport. This soon to be released booklet is your guide to learning how to play chess quickly and painlessly.

Success Stories and Player Profiles- 9 Queens chess players around the country tell us why they like chess. If you have a quote about chess and want to be featured on our website, email us!


Many thanks to Ian and Dennis for all their hard work and beautiful design. We hope you like the site as much as we do. Let us know what you think!


Categories: News

Cool Kids Chess Night at Ina Bookmans

April 19, 2012

Magnus Carlsen with Liv Tyler and Garry KasparovIt is a good time to be a chess player. Yesterday the New York Times featured a front page story about IS 318K- a Brooklyn middle school where the cool kids play chess so well that they recently won the High School National Chess Championship (think about it- one journalist compared this feat to a college basketball team defeating a team from the NBA). Next week, chess fans from around the world can watch world chess champion and male supermodel Magnus Carlsen on the Colbert Report.

Clearly, chess isn’t for nerds anymore; it’s for everyone. With that in mind, we are thrilled to announce that 9 Queens and Bookmans are joining forces to offer another monthly Chess Night for all of Tucson’s cool chess players and wannabe chess players. Starting April 19, 2012, this monthly event will be held the 3rd Thursday of every month from 6:30-8:30 pm at the Bookmans on Ina. Come by for a pick up game and fun!

Categories: Uncategorized

May Family Chess Night @ Bookman’s on Speedway celebrates May 5 Chess Fest with Alexandra Kosteniuk

April 18, 2012

Can you solve the puzzle for May? The puzzle comes from a winning game by Alexandra Kosteniuk. Black to move and mate in three.

Win a PRIZE!  Bring your puzzle solution to Bookman’s on Speedway Family Chess Night, 6:30-8:30pm, first Wednesday of every month–this month, May 2–and win a free prize. The whole family, new and experienced players are all invited to join us to play or learn chess.

Join us for a Tucson afternoon of chess fun May 5 at 9 Queen’s 5th Annual ChessFest featuring former Women’s World Chess Champion and Chess Queen Alexandra Kosteniuk.

This year’s Readymade Chess Fest draws inspiration and it’s name from the chess player and artist Marcel Duchamp. Here’s some background on this notorious chess master.

Marcel Duchamp. . .”all chess players are artists”

Marcel Duchamp was an artist who loved to play chess. He was born in France in 1887, became a U.S. citizen in 1955 and died in 1968. Some consider him one of the most important artists of the 20th century.

Many of his artworks were about chess. He believed both chess and art were made by head and by hand. During his career he increasingly became more interested in art that was mostly created by head rather than by hand. He described chess as “kinetic sculpture”–changing, in motion sculpture.

He invented an art form that he called “readymades”. He took everyday objects, such as a snow shovel, a comb, or a bicycle wheel mounted on a wooden stool, and changed them into art just by thinking of them as art and putting them in an art gallery. This was an important step in the history of art–it made art an idea rather than a traditionally artist made object, such as a drawing or a painting. He could be called the father of conceptual art.

He made many chess related art works. He designed rubber stamps to be able to make chess games that he could play through the mail (called correspondence chess). He designed a beautiful wooden chess set and later created a colored chess set. He invented a pocket sized, leather, traveling chess set.

Some of his most famous works included chess as a theme. In a series of earlier paintings–he started out as a traditional artist making paintings and drawings–he used chess players and the chess king and queen as topics. These works were titled, The Chess Players (1911), Portrait of Chess Players (1911), The King and Queen Surrounded by Swift Nudes (1912). These paintings led up to the creation of one of his most famous paintings, Nude Descending a Staircase No. 2, which shocked the New York art scene in the 1913 “Armory Show” with its radical expression of motion. Not long after this show he turned to more experimental forms of art than oil painting.

Throughout his life he was an avid chess player. He earned the title of chess master and played in the French Championships and Chess Olympiads from 1928-1933. Duchamp said, “I am still a victim of chess. It has all the beauty of art–and much more. It cannot be commercialized. Chess is much purer than art in its social position.”

Learn more about Marcel Duchamp:

Tomkins, Calvin: Duchamp: A Biography, Henry Holt and Company, Inc., 1996

Naumann, Fancis M.; Bailey, Bradley; Shahade, Jennifer: Marcel Duchamp, The Art of Chess, Readymade Press, 2009

See you at Hotel Congress in Tucson, Arizona on Saturday May 5, 2-5pm for 9 Queen’s Readymade Chess Fest–the most fun you’ve had at chess all year!

Categories: Uncategorized