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World Chess Grand Prix Party (2012)

Andrew Paulson, the Chief Executive and Founder of Agon, the company that has been awarded the commercial rights to the World Chess Championships, created a very different opening ceremony for the FIDE London Grand Prix, held last night.

The occasion took place in the beautiful neo-classical building Somerset House which is an arts and cultural centre, and home to London Fashion Week.

Instead of a longwinded ceremony, official protocol was kept to a minimum at what was described as an « opening party ». The reception was attended by more than 300 distinguished guests including Ambassadors, stars from the stage and screen, well-known models and patrons of the arts.

Invitees also enjoyed a number of performance ‘blitz’ games, where the Grandmasters competing at the Grand Prix London tournament challenged guests such as the Hollywood actress Gillian Anderson (seen in the photo with Andrew Paulsen and English Junior Joshua Altman), the chess-loving supermodel Lily Cole, and the singer Sophie Ellis-Bextor.

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