Brooklyn Castle

For the past few years, we’ve been really fortunate to have a relationship with POV, the award-winning documentary series on PBS. They do really thought-provoking films on contemporary social issues around the world, which we screen here as a pre-broadcast premier. This Saturday, September 28 at 2pm, we are going to feature a film that hits close to home. Brooklyn Castle tells the story of a chess team at an inner city junior high school here in Brooklyn. The school has won more national chess championships than any other in the country, yet the program has been threatened by budget cuts to all the extracurricular activities. The film follows the challenges these kids face in their personal lives as well as with the team, and shows how their dedication to mastering this difficult game strengthens their belief in what is possible for their lives. I hate to just throw around words like “powerful” and “inspirational”, but this film is both of those things and more.

After the film on Saturday, stick around and get schooled by the students from I.S. 318 who will be here showing off their chess-playing skills. We’ll also have an oversized chess set from New York Chess & Games in the Beaux-Arts Court. I am especially excited to see the customized chess sets made by my colleague David Huerta in Technology, who fabricated the pieces with a 3D printer—all based on objects from our permanent collection!  Stay tuned for more from David tomorrow about making this chess set, which included working with our curatorial staff to find the right fit for the various pieces.

We hope to see you Saturday!