American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America

AGA President Andy Okun’s Father, Milton T. Okun, Music Producer for John Denver, Peter, Paul and Mary Dies

Tuesday November 15, 2016

AGA president Andy Okun’s father, music producer-arranger Milton T. Okun, who worked with John Denver, Placido2016.11.15_milton-okun-gold-records Domingo and Peter, Paul and Mary among other artists, died Tuesday in Beverly Hills. He was 92. Okun died at home five weeks shy of his 93rd birthday.

A child prodigy pianist, Okun became a music teacher in the New York public school system, before his love for folk music — he was part of the folk quartet The Skifflers and also recorded several albums of his own in the 1950s — drew him into arranging and conducting, including two seasons with Harry Belafonte.

Okun was fired by Belafonte, but the parting proved to be a blessing in disguise, kick-starting his multi-decade career as a music producer. Under his guidance, Peter, Paul and Mary would become one of the music industry’s most successful folk ensembles. Okun also worked with The Brothers Four, The Chad Mitchell Trio and soloists such as Odetta, Laura Nyro, Tom Paxton and John Denver, whom he discovered and guided until the singer’s 1997 death in a plane crash. Okun was known for bringing classical arrangements into the folk/pop idiom, as evidenced with “Perhaps Love,” a gold record duet pairing Denver and opera great Domingo.

PBS named Okun as one of the three most important music producers of all time, along with Quincy Jones and Sir George Martin, and he would collect more than 75 gold and platinum records and 16 Grammy Award nominations for his work.
In 1960, Okun and his wife, Rosemary, founded Cherry Lane Music Publishing Co., which grew into one of the largest independent music publishers. He sold Cherry Lane to Sony BMG in 2010. With his wife, Okun was a founding member and major supporter of the Los Angeles Opera and pivotal in bringing Domingo to Los Angeles as the LAO’s artistic director. Okun’s career is detailed in a 2011 memoir, “Along the Cherry Lane: Tales from the Life of Music Industry Legend Milt Okun.” Adapted from a longer obituary in the Beverly Hills Patch.  Read Okun’s obit in Billboard here.

Funeral services will be private. Post condolences on Andy Okun’s Facebook page.

Categories: U.S./North America

Syracuse Hosts Annual Self-Pair Tourney

Monday November 14, 2016

The Syracuse Go Club held its annual fall self-pair tournament on Saturday, November 12. Nineteen players participated, and2016.11.14_syracuse1“everyone was able to select a new book from Slate and Shell at the end of the day,” reports organizer Richard Moseson. Player strength 2016.11.14_syracuse2ranged from 23k to 8d.
photos: (right) Tony Tang 8d (left) and Yiteng Li 7d consider Yunhan Li’s single large group of stones; (left): Jim Sutliff 18k, and Joe Fratianni 14k, playing in their first tournament. photos by Richard Moseson

Categories: U.S./North America

AGF College Scholarships Available

Sunday November 13, 2016

AGF-logo-smallApplications are now being accepted for the American Go Foundation(AGF) college scholarshipThe program  recognizes high school students who have served as important youth organizers and promoters for the go community . To apply, download and complete the application form here.  Applicants should describe their accomplishments and volunteer work in a short essay. Letters of recommendation may also be included. Applicants whose enthusiasm and ambition have helped spread go in under-served areas will be given special consideration. Strong players who spend much of their time voluntarily teaching will also be considered, although the award focuses on promoters and organizers who have made substantial contributions during their go career. Applications are due Dec. 11th this year. -Paul Barchilon, E-J Youth Editor.  



Top Honors for Dan Micsa 4d at Space Coast Go Tournament

Monday November 7, 2016

Go players from Miami, Tampa, and Orlando converged on Rockledge, FL, (near the Kennedy Space Center) to find the 2016 2016.11.07_spacecoastgotournament-collageSpace Coast Go Tournament on November 5.  The venue was Rockledge Fire Station No. 1, in a conference room often used for EMS training.
Hurricane Matthew had caused a delay of games, but the weather was fine on Saturday.  Twenty players competed for prizes donated by Yellow Mountain Imports and Slate and Shell books.  After three rounds of play, more than half of the players received awards of books or equipment.  Dan Micsa 4d from the Space Coast club, took top honors.  He was followed by Nicholas Casaubon 1k from Miami, in the upper kyu division (1k-8k).  Tanner Robart 14k from Sarasota ranked first in the lower kyu division (9k – 15k).
Tournament director Bart Lipofsky hosted a pizza party at his home afterwards.  Three boards saw continued action until later in the evening.
Division 1  (4D – 1D)
1. Dan Micsa  4D; 2.Michael Choi  4D; 3. Karsten Henckell  4D
Division 2 (1K  - 8K): 1. Nicholas Casaubon  1K; 2. Hamilton Vargas Guerra  7K; 3. Aaron Otero  8K; 4. Efrain Davila  2K; 5. Steve Barberi 1K
Division 3 (9K – 15K): 1. Tanner Robart  14K; 2. Arian Inigo  9K; 3. Quinten Goodwin  9K; 4. George Lebovitz  10K; 5. Kevin van Workum  11K
Photos (clockwise from top left): Paul Wiegand 6k (Orlando), making a critical opening move; Dan Micsa trying to read the game; Players and Prizes (l-r): Paul Wiegand, Aaron Otero, Ellis Knickerbocker, Dam Micsa, Steve Barberi, Arian Inigo, Michael Choi, Nicholas Casaubon, Tanner Robart, John Seekins, Hamilton Vargas Guerra, Karsten Henckell, Efrain Davila;  Steve Barberi 1k (Tampa); Aaron Otero 8k (Space Coast);  an EMS training dummy stored in the venue. photos courtesy Bart Lipofsky
Categories: U.S./North America

Young Lions Tourney Open for Registration

Monday November 7, 2016

14794103_1807097989502517_1019931161_nRegistration for the annual Young Lions Tournament is now open, through November 26th. Organized by the American Go Honor Society (AGHS),  the tournament  welcomes kids 18 and younger who have not graduated from high school yet. “This is a great platform for talented young players to compete with and learn from each other,” says AGHS Promotions Head Albert Yen. The tournament will be on December 4th and 11th. There will be four rounds and trophies will be awarded to the top finishers of each bracket. In addition, AGHS t-shirts will be given to the top four finishers of each bracket. Players do not need to compete in all of the four games to participate. For more info, click here; to register, click here.

Dairong Xu Squashes Competition at NOVA Pumpkin Classic

Monday October 31, 2016

The NOVA Pumpkin Classic was held last Saturday, October 29, at George Mason Law School in Arlington VA. Over 30 2016.10.31_novapumpparticipated, including 13 dan-level players. As usual, the winners took home fine pumpkins, selected by NOVA President Gary Smith. Of note is top winner Dairong Xu, who marched firmly through his top opposition.
The winners were:
First place: Dairong Xu, 5D, 4-0; Zehua Zhao, 4D, 3-1; Joseph Craig, 4K, 4-0; Gary Smith, 10K, 3-1; Robert Cole, 12K, 3-1 and Qidi Xu, 16K, 3-1 (tied); and Andrew Browning, 25K, 3-1.
Second place: Justin Teng, 6D, 3-1; Yanqing Sun, 3D, 2-2; Ryan Hunter, 1D, 3-1; Bob Crites, 7K, 3-0 and Sarah Crites, 9K, 3-1 (tied!); and Antonina Perez-Lopez, 20K, 2-2.
photo: the happy pumpkin crowd; report/photo by Allan Abramson
Categories: U.S./North America

U.S. Pros Battle in Sankei Cup

Monday October 31, 2016

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGansheng Shi 1P (l) made it through to the second round of the Sankei CupOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA before losing to Tetsuya Kiyonari 9p. He defeated Yosuke Shintani 1p in the first round. Eric Lui 1P (r) lost to Mika Yoshida 8p in the first round. Click here for complete results.
- photos courtesy the Kansai Kiin


Nihon Ki-in Chairman Participates in Nick Sibicky YouTube

Thursday October 27, 2016

Mr. Hiroaki Dan gives a greeting to YouTube audienceThe Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nihon Ki-in, Mr. Hiroaki Dan, gives a greeting in Japanese at the beginning of Nick Sibicky’s latest YouTube lecture.  Mr. Dan was in the United States on personal business, and he had a one day layover in Seattle.  He spent the afternoon and evening with Seattle Go Center board members, and attended the beginning of Nick Sibicky’s class, which was on Go Seigen (Lecture #223).  Later, while enjoying Dungeness crab, he said he was impressed with the quality and amount of teaching done by volunteers at the Seattle Go Center.  report/photo by Brian Allen.


AGA Live Commentary: Park, Tang Down to Last Game of Ing Pro Final

Tuesday October 25, 2016

Myungwan Kim 9p will give live commentary on exciting final round of the 8th Ing Pro Cup finals. Park Junghwan 9p and Tang Weixing 9p play the fifth and final match of the best of five series on Tuesday evening starting at 6:30 p.m. PDT. The players are tied 2-2 and the winner of this round will take home the grand prize of $400,000. The commentary will start at 11 p.m. PDT on the AGA’s YouTube and Twitch channels.2014.10.24_Tang+Weixing2015.02.12_Park-Junghwan-19th-LG-Cup-300x448


Mark Lee Wins Cotsen Open, Sweeping 5-0

Sunday October 23, 2016

Mark Lee won the 2016 Cotsen Open, scoring a decisive 5-0 sweep in which the only real threat came in Round 3 when he2016.10.23_mark-lee-trophy faced “a very hard situation” against Dae Hyuk “Danny” Ko. In the end he prevailed against Ko by resignation, a similar end for most of the rest of his games, earning a second straight Cotsen title. Lee (center) missed this year’s US Open and says he’s been hard at work studying, but not go. He’s a freshman in college now, where he says his favorite subject is geography. “I like it, but it’s not nearly as much fun as go,” he laughed.

In addition to tournament sponsor Eric Cotsen (right), AGA president Andy Okun (left) thanked Ambassador Lee Key Cheol, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in Los Angeles for his strong support for the Cotsen Open. He also thanked Kim Nakjung, Director of the Korean Cultural Center in Los Angeles, and Seunghoan Roh, General Manager of the KCCLA, which hosted the Cotsen Open this year. “We really appreciate the longstanding support, not just for this great event, but for promoting go throughout the United States,” said Okun. Cotsen, in addition to thanking all the players for showing up, expressed special appreciation to his  tournament team, “who handled this year’s challenges incredibly well.”

See below for the Cotsen winner report. Click here for the 2016 Cotsen crosstab, where we’ll be posting the top-board games broadcast this weekend on KGS. If you’d like your game record included, please email it to us at; be sure to complete all the game information.

2016.10.23Myungwan-Mark Lee 7d vs Danny Ko 7dSix more videos have been posted on the AGA’s YouTube channel, including the Day Two preview with Chris Garlock and Andrew Jackson; Myungwan Kim 9P on the Round 3 game between Mark Lee 7d and Danny Ko 7d, Jennie Shen 2P on the Round 4 game between Mark Lee and Luo Qipeng, Yang Yilun 7p on his exhibition 2016.10.23-tourney-shotgame against Liao Guiyong 9p, Jennie Shen 2P on the Round 5 game between Mark Lee and Chang Duek Je and a wrap-up interview with AGA president Andy Okun. You can check out all the Cotsen Open video reports on this handy 2016 Cotsen playlist.

2016 Cotsen Winner Report
Open winners: 1st: Mark Lee; 2nd: Qipeng Luo; 3rd: Aaron Ye; 4th: Andrew Lu; 5th: Danny Ko; 6th: Deuk Je Chang.
Division A: 1st: Qi-Hao Zhao; 2nd: Mellisa Xuning Zhang; 3rd: Kevin Chao
Division B: 1st: Tim Chang; 2nd: Jesse Jenskins; 3rd: Seowoo Wang
Division C: 1st: Kevin Blaw; 2nd: Yunjen Lee; 3rd: Angelo Orlando Cafazzo
Division D: 1st: Daniel Su; 2nd: Jung Ho Lee; 3rd: Raghavendra Morthy
Division E: 1st: Zongren Huang; 2nd: Alexander Guru; 3rd: Lucia Moscola
Club winners: 1st: Santa Monica, 2nd: Orange County, 3rd: Bay Area
- report/photos by Chris Garlock
Update: this post has been updated to correct the spelling of Qipeng Luo’s name.