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Saturday, February 26, 2011

How chess genius Kasparov, wife Dasha won Georgian 'Who wants to be a millionaire' version for charity!

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2011

Hi everyone,

Here was our previous post on Genius chess grandmaster Kasparov wins 20,000 Lari in Georgia for charity. The video has now been uploaded at the Rustavi-2 channel here. The youtube video is below.

The Georgian television show 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?' is called "Who Wants To Win 20,000?” The prize sum is quite modest by Western standards, but when Garry Kasparov and his wife Dasha took part they had pledged to donate their winnings to a brother and sister who urgently need heart surgery. Here is a transcript for you to enjoy from the link at

1. (20 lari) Which chess award is given to the best chess players in the world?
A. Oscar
B. Golden Globe
C. Palme d'Or
D. Silver Bear

2. (30 lari) How old was Garry Kasparov in 1985 when he became the youngest World Champion ever in chess?
A. 20
B. 22
C. 24
D. 26

3. (40 lari) Which grandmaster was in the list of the “Top 100 geniuses of our time” published in the Daily Telegraph newspaper in 2007?
A. Vladimir Kramnik
B. Anatoly Karpov
C. Garry Kasparov
D. Magnus Carlsen

4. (50 lari) Which traditional Georgian dish is similar to pelmeni dumplings?
A. Khinkali
B. Satsivi
C. Khachapuri
D. Lobiani

5. (100 lari, first guaranteed prize) Which of these well-known wines isn’t Georgian?
A. Khvanchkara
B. Saperavi
C. Château Margaux
D. Kindzmarauli

6. (200 lari) What is the meaning of the phrase “shakh mat”, from which the Russian “shakhmaty” comes?
A. Long live the king

B. The king is dead
C. Naked king
D. God save the king

7. (400 lari) What is the Latin abbreviation in international currency conventions of the Georgian “lari”?

8. (800 lari) Which of these twentieth century events took place before all the others?
A. The construction of the Berlin Wall
B. Gagarin flies into space
C. John F. Kennedy’s inauguration
D. The murder of John Lennon
(Garry knows that three of these events happened in 1961, and cleverly works out which one was the earliest.)

9. (1600 lari) Leonid Gaidai’s film 'Ivan Vasilievich Changes his Profession' is based on a novel by which author?
A. Ilf and Petrov
B. Alexei Tolstoy
C. Eduard Uspensky
D. Mikhail Bulgakov

10. (3000 lari, second guaranteed prize) The reigning monarch of which country is a five-time Olympic bobsleigh competitor?
A. Monaco
B. Belgium
C. Norway
D. Sweden

Kasparov rejects the correct answer, but is uncertain what to choose. He uses the 'Ask the Audience' option and gets it right by a very narrow margin.

11. (4000 lari) Which nervous tic is to be observed in onychophagia?
A. Frequent blinking
B. Nose rubbing
C. Gnashing of teeth
D. Nail biting

12. (6000 lari) How many sovereign states make up the European Union?
A. 18
B. 23
C. 27
D. 30

Kasparov, the memory freak, tries to solve this one by actually naming all the members one by one (try that yourself!). He gets all but one and guesses the nearest number correctly.

13. (8,000 lari) St. Malachy prophesied the name of the last Pope, which is said to be the reason that Popes never choose it. What is that name?
A. Stephen
B. Peter
C. Adrian
D. Alexander

14. (12,000 lari) Which of the following was the last opera of Giuseppe Verdi?
A. Aida
B. Falstaff
C. La Traviata
D. Othello

The Kasparovs used their Fifty-Fifty option here – the computer randomly eliminates two incorrect answer choices, leaving the contestant with a choice between the correct answer and one incorrect one.

15. (20,000 lari) Which of these combinations corresponds to the number 5 in Morse Code?
A. 5 dashes
B. 5 dots
C. 2 dashes 2 dots
D. None of the above

Here the Kasparovs used their Phone-A-Friend option, but unsuccessfully – the time runs out before the friend can come up with a coherent answer. However the charity version of the quiz has an extra lifeline: the contestants may ask for an alternative question. This is what the Kasparovs did.

15. (20,000 lari) Which strait was Louis Blériot the first to fly across on 25 July 1909?

A. The Dardanelles
B. The Bosphorus
C. The Strait of Gibraltar
D. La Manche (The English Channel)

Garry and Dasha spend an inordinate amount of time on this one. Is it a trick question – it seems too easy. Actually they later discovered that the producers had not prepared a difficult question for this final phase, because nobody had got so far in the past.

The answer is correct, the Kasparovs have won 20,000 for the children's urgently needed heart surgery. Garry told us that in the phone-in action an additional 46,020 lari was donated.
The correct answers are; 1=A, 2=B, 3=C, 4=A, 5=C, 6=B, 7=D,
8=C, 9=D, 10=A, 11=D, 12=C, 13=B, 14=B, 15=B and 15=D.

From Alexandra Kosteniuk's
Also see her personal blog at

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