Takemiya Masaki steals the show at 55th European Go Congress

The legendary Takemiya Masaki 9p, pioneer of the ‘Cosmic Go Style’, has stolen the show at the 55th European Go Congress (2011) in Bordeaux, France.

Takemiya Masaki shows off his of command of 'faire la bise'.

Towards the end of the first week of the Congress, on July 29 2011, Zhuyeqing Tea hosted a VIP night. Zhuyeqing Tea is the major sponsor of the European Go Congress.

Frenchwoman, ‘Charlotte’, distributed Zhuyeqing samples to all VIPs. Upon receiving his bag, Takemiya took the opportunity to show off his of command of ‘faire la bise’ or the local tradition of cheek kissing.

Takemiya dances Salsa

He also presented Charlotte with business cards featuring his photograph (that he’d had printed especially for the occassion) so she would remember his handsome face. Takemiya’s strategy proved successful, as later in the night he and Charlotte danced Salsa, much to the delight of other Go fans.

Takemiya and Charlotte dance Salsa.

Takemiya compares dancing to the game of Go

It has been said that Go resembles a war, but Takemiya prefers to liken the game to a dance. Dancing is one of his favourite hobbies. He took it  up a few years ago as exercise and claims it helps to improve his Go and concentration. Takemiya has even competed in amateur dance competitions.

Takemiya Masaki in an amateur dance competition.

He also, doesn’t let anything, including lack of a dance floor, get in the way of his enjoyment of dance, much to the amusement of Chinese Go luminary Nie Weiping 9p.

No dance floor? No problem. Takemiya shows off his skills for Nie Weiping (sitting in background).

Video of Takemiya dancing

Takemiya is actually quite a good dancer. For those who would like to check out his skills, here’s a video of him dancing a few years ago. No doubt his dancing has become even better since then.

Takemiya Photo Gallery

Here are some more photos from the European Go Congress event and of Takemiya dancing.

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About Jing

Jing likes writing, and can occasionally be convinced to play a game of Go. Even though she doesn't play Go as often as she once did, she still enjoys following the professional Go scene and writing about it on Go Game Guru.

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  1. So was it only sponsors and pro players allowed to attend?

    • Usually at things like this, the sponsor invites whomever they want. But in the case of Go, pros are almost always included.