Born06 October 1982
Levon Aronian's father, Grigor Aronov, is a physicist-crystallize, a Jew by nationality, a mother by Seda Avagyan, a mountain engineer, an Armenian by nationality.
Levon was a calm and sedentary child. For hours he could sit in a chair playing with the same toy and singing Mozart's Little Night Serenade. He started singing earlier than speaking. His parents thought that Levon would become a musician.
He learned to read at a young age, knew the flags of almost every state, was interested in the history of American conquest, traveling around the world.
He learned to play chess at the age of nine with his sister Lilit. During his childhood, from 1990-1997, his coach was currently Grandmaster Melikset Khachiyan. According to Khachiyan, when Levon became a grandmaster, he already needed a better coach. This is the role played by GM Arshak Petrosyan, with whom Aronyan mastered many subtleties of chess.
The first books on Levon's table were the "Selected 300 Games of Alekhine", the Kapablanca Collection of Games, the New York Tournament Games of 1924 and 1927 with Alekhine's commentary, and the Capablanca Chess Guide. These books have greatly helped Levon's creative growth. what his peers learned in one year, he was learning in one month.
Levon first started talking about Levon in 1992 after a brilliant victory in the U-10 World Championship.
Personal life and preferences
Levon Aronian engaged Ariana Kaoil, the international female wrestler representing Australia. During their 2006 World Youth Championship, they met Aronyan's Australian friend, who was Ariana's first teacher. He got acquainted, thinking that Levon and Ariana were very similar in thinking. It is noteworthy that the following incident occurred at the World Olympiad in Turin in 2006: English grandmaster Danny Gormell was fistfighting Levon Aronian as he and Ariana danced on the dance floor. The reason was probably jealousy.
On February 18, 2015, Levon and Ariana were engaged. The wedding of Aronyan and Kaoili took place on September 30, 2017.
In November 2012 the Russian book of Levon's mother, Seda Avagyan-Aronova's "Levon Aronian", which summarizes the details of Levon's biography, his remarkable and triumphant chess pieces, in fact, the author's games, which brought him chess and fame. According to his mother, whatever he wanted, he would become both a mathematician and a musician. But he is completely absorbed in chess. Levon is both a cinematographer and knows great music - classical, jazz. He reads a lot, mainly philosophical literature.
Aronian mainly lives in Berlin, but after President Serzh Sargsyan donated an apartment on the 9th floor of a new high-rise building on Khanjyan Street, Levon is more often in Yerevan.
After winning the 2005 World Cup in Khanty-Mansiysk, Levon's article in the German magazine Shah called "I dream of building a home for my whole family." Aronian's dream come true. He built a large house where all the members of his family live.
Levon thinks his life is chess. “It would be a mistake to say that my life is in Armenia or Europe. my life is chess.'
He loves sports but admits he doesn't play football well. He likes to spend his free time traveling, attending clubs.
Aronian is considered one of the brightest and most original chess players in modern times. He is especially strong in the areas where he has the initiative, and he knows the secrets of the endgame well. He is a master of fast, lightning and Fischer chess.
In 1994, Levon became the Under 12 World Champion in Szeged, Hungary. In the championship, he left behind the future high-ranking grandmasters Etienne Bacrot (France), Ruslan Ponomaryov (Ukraine), Francisco Vallejo Pons (Spain) and Alexander Grishchuk (Russia). Aronian was awarded the FIDE Master title to win the championship.
In 1995 Aronian won the Under-14 World Rapid Championship in Paris.
In 1996, he won the Spanish Under-14 World Championship.
In the same year, he became an international master.
In 1997 Aronian won the Kasparov Cup.
In 1998 teammates Gabriel Sargsyan, Tigran L. Petrosyan, and Varuzhan Hakobyan became the winners of the 6th Children's Olympiad in Istanbul, Turkey.
In 1999 he became the vice-champion of Armenia and became part of the Armenian team, which became the European champion in Batumi.
In 2000 he was awarded the title of Grand Master.
He has lived in Germany since 2001 but continues to represent Armenia, which he considers his homeland. "I feel good in Germany, but ... it's not my homeland."
In 2001 Levon became the second winner of the Armenian Championship.
In Greece in 2001, and India in 2002, he twice won the Under-20 World Championship.
In 2003 he won the Mainz Fischer Chess Tournament.
In 2004 he won a bronze medal at the European Individual Championship in Turkey.
In the same year, he won a bronze medal at the World Olympiad held in Calvia, Italy.
In October 2003, due to disagreements with the then leadership of the Armenian Chess Federation in 2002-2003, he left the federation and began to represent Germany. However, the incident quickly settled down, and since May 2004, Levon has again represented Armenia.
In 2005 he won the Gibraltar Tournament with Hikaru Nakamura and Boris Avrukh, and became the sole winner of the Stepanakert Tournament, surpassing the same Nakamura and Ukrainian Vassily Ivanchuk. With these victories, Aronyan's rise began and he broke into the chess elite.
In December 2005, he achieved the greatest achievement of his career so far: Khanty-Mansiysk won the FIDE World Cup. In the final of that tournament, he beat Ruslan Ponomaryov 3-1. This victory enabled him to fight in the world champion contests. In the first match in 2007, he defeated Magnus Carlsen of Norway 7-5, and in the second, 3.5-2.5 against Alexei Shirov of Spain and won the right to take part in the Candidates Tournament. In this tournament in Mexico City, Aronian was in poor health, showed poor results and finished 7th in the penultimate round.
At the request of sports journalists, he was recognized as the best athlete of the year.
In March 2006, he won a stunning victory in the 20th-ranked Linares (Spain), earning 8.5 points out of 14. He surpassed some of the strongest GMs, including FIDE World Champion Veselin Topalov.
In June, Vladimir Akopian, Karen Asryan, Smbat Lputyan, Gabriel Sargsyan and Artashes Minasyan won the 37th World Olympiad in Turin. For that victory, he and his teammates were awarded the Movses Khorenatsi Medal.
In the final match with Peter Swidler in Mainz, Germany, he won the title of World Chess Champion.
At the end of the year, Levon shared the 1st-3rd place with two other grandmasters at Tal Memorial in Moscow.
At the request of sports journalists, he was recognized as the best athlete of the year.
In a friendly rapid chess match in Yerevan with world champion Vladimir Kramnik, he won 4–2.
In the final match with Viswanathan Anand in the German city of Mainz, he defended the title of World Chess-960 (Fischer Chess).
The traditional blind and fast chess tournament in Amber 2008 in Nice, France, won both ways and was declared the absolute winner of the whole tournament.
He won the FIDE Grand Prix Tournament in Sochi.
The Armenian team in Dresden repeated its success in 2006, becoming the champion of the 38th World Olympiad. Aronian and other members of the team Vladimir Akopian, Gabriel Sargsyan, Tigran L. Aronian and other members of the team for that victory. Petrosyan and Artashes Minasyan awarded a 1st-degree medal for "Services to Homeland".
In Nice, Aronyan repeated last year's success by becoming the absolute winner of the Amber 2009 Blind and Rapid Chess Tournament.
He won the FIDE Grand Prix Tournament in Nalchik.
At the FIDE Grand Prix Tournament held in Jermuk, he shared the 2-3 places and was declared the Grand Prix win ahead of time.
Bilbao became the winner of the Grand Slam final.
In November 2010 he won the Mikhail Tal Memorial in Moscow, and again a few days later became the world champion of lightning chess in Moscow. The 5th Tal Memorial was the first in which Aronian took part after overcoming the 2800 points of Elo.
In Monte Carlo, he became the winner of Amber 2011 Blind and Rapid Chess Traditional Tournament.
Having won the FIDE Grand Prix (2008-2010), Aronian won the right to take part in the world champion contests. In May 2011, in the Russian city of Kazan, he competed in the World Candidates Tournament, where eight grandmasters contested the right to compete with world champion Viswanathan Anand. Aronian's first opponent was Alexander Grischuk of Russia. The four main games ended in a draw, and in the accelerated schedule the Armenian chess player lost 1.5-2.5 and was left out of the further fight.
On July 17-26, 2011, the Armenian national team (Levon Aronian, Sergey Movsisyan, Vladimir Hakobyan, Gabriel Sargsyan, Robert Hovhannisyan) became the winner of the World Team Championship in Ningbo, China.
Levon Aronian at the Istanbul Olympiad
In September 2012, teammates Sergey Movsisyan, Vladimir Hakobyan, Gabriel Sargsyan and Tigran L. Khachatryan will be in Istanbul, Turkey. With Petrosyan, he won the World Olympiad for the third time. Levon Aronian awarded St. Mesrop Mashtots Order for his victory on September 10, 2012.
From March 14 to April 1, 2013, Levon Aronian took part in the World Candidates Tournament in London, where his rivals were Magnus Carlsen, Vladimir Kramnik, Teymur Rajabov, Alexander Grischuk, Vasily Ivanchuk, Vasily Ivanchuk. The winner of the tournament had the right to compete for the title of world champion with Indian grandmaster Viswanathan Anand. His players in this tournament were GMs Sergey Movsisyan and Hrant Melkumyan. Having had a very successful first season (3 wins, 4 draws, 1-2 places), Levon suffered three defeats in the second and lost the lead. In the tournament, he only managed five wins (twice against Ivanchuk and Rajabov, once with Gelfand), suffered three defeats (from Gelfand, Swidler, and Kramnik), finished sixth in a draw and shared 3-4 with Swidler with 8 points. Norway's Magnus Carlsen won the tournament with 8.5 points, surpassing Kramnik. In the tournament, Levon improved his rating by 5 points.
In April 2013, Aronian took part in the memorial of world champion Alexander Alyokhin, the first of which took place in Paris and the second in St. Petersburg. Earning 5.5 points out of 9, Levon shared first place with Israeli Boris Gelfand but was declared the winner.
In August, Aronian took part in the FIDE World Cup Tournament in Tromsյ, Norway. 128 chess players knocked out the World Cup title, as well as two contenders for the Candidates Tournament. Aronian had such a ticket regardless of the outcome of this tournament, but he had to play in the tournament to confirm that. It was unsuccessful for the Armenian grandmaster who lost to Russia's Evgeny Tomashevsky in the 1/16 finals.
On September 9-15, at the Chess Club and Training Center in St. Louis, USA, took part in an unprecedentedly high average (2797) Sinquefield Cup Tournament. World's second chess player Levon Aronian (2813 rating) competed with Norwegian Magnus Carlsen (2862) and American Hikaru Nakamura (2772) and Gata Kamsky (2741) in two rounds. The tournament was unsuccessful for the Armenian grandmaster. He won one, lost two, and finished third. The first was Carlsen, the second was Nakamura. The winner earned $ 70,000, 2nd place winner $ 50,000, 3rd place winner 30,000, 4th place winner 20,000.
In October in Bilbao, Spain, he took part in the 6th Grand Slam Final Tournament called the Chess Masters. Aronian's rivals were Maxim Vachier-Lagrave (France), Shahriar Mammadyarov (Azerbaijan) and Michael Adams (England). The tournament was held in two rounds with 6 rounds. Losing two victories against Vachier-Lagrave and Adams in black and ending the other games with a draw, Aronian with 10 points (calculated by "football rules" - 3 points, draw 1, defeat 0) became the winner of the tournament (In the classical way of calculating points he scored 4 points out of 6). It was his second success in the final of the year (the first in 2009).
On November 7-18, Armenia participated in the European Team Championship in Warsaw, occupying the 4th place in the European Team Championship, and won a bronze medal on the 1st board in the individual competition.
From November 25 to December 6, Aronian participated in the 9th World Team Championship in Antalya, Turkey. The team was unsuccessful, taking the 5th place, and Levon Aronian won an individual gold medal (showing 6 points - 75% out of 8).
On January 10-26 in Wijk a Zee, the Netherlands took part in the main tournament of the Tata Steel Chess Traditional Festival, which featured 12 grandmasters, and secured the sole winner's title before becoming the quadruple winner of the tournament before the end of the tournament. Before the last round, Aronian had 6 victories, 4 games ended in a draw, he had no defeat, showing a beautiful and creative game. In the tournament, he outscored all major competitors, Sergey Karyakin, Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru Nakamura. He had three more victories over Arkady Naidic, Lenier Dominguez and Wesley Soy. Commentators called Aronyan's victory over the Philippines a "genius" and admired the "Mozart glitter of the game." Only in the last round Aronian suffered a severe defeat and was defeated by Dutchman Luke van Veli. However, the defeat in this tournament did not fade. Aronian increased his rating by 14 points to 2826 and surpassed his record in May 2012.
Immediately after the Wijk a Zee, Levon left for Zurich (Switzerland), where he participated in the highest-ranked 23rd (average rating: 2801) Zurich Chess Challenge 2014 tournament, from January 29 to February 4, where world champion Magnus Karel played. as well as Viswanathan Anand, Hikaru Nakamura, Fabiano Caruana, and Boris Gelfand. The Blitz Chess Tournament was held on January 29 to determine the participants' starting numbers, with Levon sharing the 1st and 2nd places with Carlsen. The tournament consisted of two parts: in the first, the grandmasters played classic, in the second the fast chess rules. In classical chess, Levon took the 2nd place and in third place the fastest. In the overall standings, he shared the 2-3 places, beating world champion Magnus Carlsen. In this tournament, Levon improved his rating (classical chess) by another 4 points to a record 2830 (this result was officially confirmed on March 1, 2014).
Levon Aronian took part in the Candidates Tournament on March 11-30 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. The winner of the two-round tournament was entitled to take on world champion Magnus Carlsen. Aronian's (2830) odds were former world champions Vladimir Kramnik (Russia, 2787), Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria, 2785), Viswanathan Anand (India, 2770), as well as Sergey Karjakin (Russia, 2766), Pyotr (Russia, 2766), Pi 2758), Shahriar Mamedyarov (Azerbaijan, 2757) and Dmitry Andreykin (Russia, 2709). In the first season, Levon won three, lost one, and finished second. He spent the second season unsuccessful, having suffered three defeats and eventually finished 6th in the standings. Viswanathan Anand made it one round before winning the tournament. In this tournament, Levon reduced his rating by 18 points.
Levon took part in the Norway Chess 2014 Tournament in Stavanger, Norway from June 2-13, with nine of the world's strongest competitors competing. The first day there was a blitz chess tournament, which also played the main draw. Aronian took the 2nd place, but got the number one, as according to the rules, the chess player could have chosen any number. The first was world champion Magnus Carlsen, who chose No. 5. In the main tournament, Levon lost one, defeating Sergey Karjakin, the next winner, losing two games (to Alexander Grischuk and Magnus Carlsen) and finishing sixth in a draw. By the way, he had won in at least three of the games, but missed and managed to score just 1 point.
On August 1-14, in Tromsյ, Norway, teammates Gabriel Sargsyan, Sergei Movsisyan, Vladimir Hakobyan, and Tigran Kotanjyan participated in the World Olympiad in the Armenian national team. Levon headed the team, playing on the first board. Participating in 10 games, he won 3 games, finished 7th in a row and finished 7th on the first board. The Armenian team was on the 8th.
On August 27-September 7, the city of St. Louis, USA, participated in the two-day Sinfield Cup Tournament. All of his rivals, Norwegian world champion Magnus Carlsen, Italian Fabiano Caruana, American Hikaru Nakamura, Bulgarian Veselin Topalov, and Frenchman Maxim Vachier-Lagrave topped the coefficient. The average coefficient of the tournament was 2801.7, which was a record in history. Aronian's speech failed. he had only one victory (over Topalov), lost 3 and split 4-5.
In Bilbao in September, Aronian took part in the Grand Slam Final of the Chess Masters Final where he won two matches, the other four games ended in a draw and finished second, beating former world champion Viswanathan Anand.
At the October 8 special session, the Yerevan Council of Elders awarded Levon Aronian with the title of Honorary Citizen on the occasion of the 2796th anniversary of the city.
Aronian was a lucky year in sports. He failed several tournaments and significantly reduced his ratings, dropping from 5th place at the beginning of the year to the end of the year.
Last year's series of failures continued in the first tournaments of 2015. In the Wijk a Zee, Baden-Baden, and Zurich tournaments, Levon has only won 2 of the 25 matches, suffered 5 defeats, ended the other games in a draw and reduced his rating by about 30 points. He was in the 10th place in the rating list as of March 1. Aronian was last in such a low position in January 2008.
In April, he participated in the World Team Championship in Tsakhkadzor, where the team won bronze medals and Levon was the first on the first board (6 out of 9 points).
Levon took a two-month break and did not take part in the tournament after a very unsuccessful performance at Norway Chess 2015 in the first round of the Grand Chess Tour Norway in Stavanger, Norway, in June. His return was very successful. In August-September, he performed admirably in the second series of the series, the 2013 Finals Cup, St. Louis, USA, which was a very high 22nd place. This tournament was exceptional in that the first half of the participants - 5 grandmasters - exceeded 2800 in individual rankings. Levon scored three victories (all three against USA representatives Caruana, Soy, and Nakamura), the other games ended in a draw and, with one point ahead of the nearest competitors, took the first place with 6 points. Levon raised his rating by 19.1 points. He won $ 75,000 for the victory.
In October, Levon won the European Club Championship as part of Russia's Siberia team. He played on the second board and ended all of his games in a draw.
In November, he participated in the European Team Championship in Armenia and won two silver medals - one with the team and the other with the individual (6 points out of 9 on the first board).
Neither the results of the tournaments nor the individual rating Levon Aronian had the right to take part in the World Candidates Tournament to be held in Moscow in March 2016. However, in November it became clear that he would still play in that tournament. On November 4, FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov met in Yerevan with the President of Armenia, President of the Chess Federation Serzh Sargsyan. They discussed the organization of the tournament. The organizers will be FIDE, AGON with the support of the Russian Chess Federation, and the partner will be Tashir. The organizers had the right to nominate one participant, and that participant was Levon Aronian.
On December 4-13 in the capital of the United Kingdom took part in the final of the Grand Chess Tour, London Chess Classic, where its competitors were Carlsen, Topalov, Anand, Nakamura, Caruana, Giri, Vachier-Lagrave, Grischuk and Adam. Levon had only one victory (against Topalov), all the other games ended in a draw and finished 4th with 5 points, half a point behind the three winners. He was 3rd overall in the Grand Chess Tour, behind Carlsen and Giri.
On March 10-29, Levon Aronian took part in the Candidates Tournament in Moscow. The winner was given the right to throw world champion, Magnus Carlsen, in the fall. Levon, who took part in the tournament due to the wild card given by the organizers, started the tournament successfully, winning 2 of the first 6 rounds and finishing in 4 rounds. Before the 8th round, he shared the 1st and 2nd places with Sergey Karjakin but lost in the 9th and 11th stages, finished the rest of the draw and split 4-7th in the final standings. Russia's Sergey Karyakin won.
In April Levon Aronian took part in the Altibox Norway Chess 2016 Tournament in Stavanger, Norway. At the start and midfield, Levon was at peace and finished the first 6 games in a draw. He then won two consecutive victories over Elyanov and Carlsen) and shared the first place with world champion Magnus Carlsen before the last round. In the last game, Levon ended in a draw and took the 2nd place in the tournament. The winner was Magnus Carlsen, who suffered his only defeat in the tournament from Levon Aronian.
Levon Aronian has not won a major tournament in almost two years. In April he was able to celebrate a victory in the supercar. He held the GRENKE Chess Classic tournament in Germany in a beautiful way, won 4 in a row, finished 3 games and secured first place one round before the end of the tournament.
In the same year, he also won the classical chess tournament Altibox Norway Chess, beating Hikaru Nakamura, Vladimir Kramnik, Magnus Carlsen, and several other famous chess players. In the Grand Chess Tour, he is in the 3rd place, behind only Maxim Vachier-Lagrave and Magnus Carlsen.
The first major success in 2018 was in August. Levon shared the 1st-3rd places with Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana at the 2013 Sinclair Cup Tournament in the USA. He also won the Grand Chess Tour final round, scoring 34 points and finishing 2nd.
Aronian's first major success in 2019 was in August, when he won the Grand Slam Tournament 2019 in St. Louis, USA, in a competition of 10 participants. In rapid chess, he shared the 1st and 2nd places in the lightning and the 4th and 5th places. In the overall standings, he was half a point ahead of the pursuers.
In November he repeated his success at the 6th Tournament held in Bucharest, the Romanian capital. In rapid chess, he shared the 2nd and 4th places, and in the lightning, the 5-6th. In the aggregate, he shared the 1st-2nd places with Sergey Karyakin. The winner was decided by the tie-break, where Aronian won 1-1.
Controversy with the Armenian Chess Federation
Having settled in Germany in 2001, Levon did not bid farewell to the Armenian Chess Federation. He continued to represent Armenia, studying at the Armenian State Institute of Physical Education in Yerevan, participating in the chess life of Armenia, especially the championship.
Levon Aronian with the President of the Chess Federation of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, 2008, Dresden
In September 2002, the 62nd championship ended with Aronyan's victory, he became the 31st champion. In October the Armenian team was due to participate in the World Olympiad in Bled (Slovenia). According to the rules, the Armenian champion had to add to the squad. Levon returned to Germany in high spirits and waited for the invitation to attend the pre-Olympic rally.
By the instruction of the federation, Smbat Lputyan said by phone that Levon was not invited to the squad as his presence could disrupt the squad and that Levon's character was very bad. That is why the offended Levon Aronian applied to the German Chess Federation asking to change his chess citizenship.
On March 20, 2004, a conference of the Armenian Chess Federation was held in Yerevan, where the RA Minister of Defense Serge Sargsyan was elected the head of the organization. Substantial changes have begun in the chess life of Armenia, with chess players leaving the country first and foremost. Many callers could not persuade Levon to return home. The issue was resolved by Serge Sargsyan's call, and in May Levon again represented Armenia, leading his team.
In November 2010, Levon Aronian first crossed the 2800 point mark in classical chess (2801) and became the sixth player in the world (after world champions Gary Kasparov, Vladimir Kramnik, Vishwanathan Anand, Veselin Kaswaginatsi, as well as Veselin Topalagov as well as super-master character. In 2014, two more chess players crossed the threshold of 2800: Italian grandmaster Fabiano Caruana (2801) and Alexander Grischuk of Russia (2810) and American Hikaru Nakamura (2802) in June 2015. In August 2016, they were joined by Maxim Vachier-Lagrave of France (2819), Wesley Soon of America (2808) in January 2017, Shahriar Mammadyarov of Azerbaijan (2800) in June and Dean Liren of China (2804) in September 2018. At its highest rating (2830, March 2014) Aronian is behind only Magnus Carlsen (2881, March 2014), Gary Kasparov (2851, July 1999) and Fabiano Caruana (2844, October 2014).
Since 2012, FIDE has also been calculating the ratings for fast and lightning chess.
Levon Aronian has played in 1996, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2018 Chess Olympiads in the Armenian national team. He won a bronze medal with his team in 2004, and a gold medal in 2006, 2008 and 2012.
He has participated in the World Team Championships five times in 2005, 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2015. With the team, Levon has won one gold (in 2011) and two bronze medals.
Aronian has participated in European Team Championships 9 times in 1999, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019. He won two silver and one gold medal with the team (in 1999).
Movses Khorenatsi Medal (2006)
1st Degree Medal for Services to the Homeland (2008)
St. Mesrop Mashtots Order (2012)
Honorable Citizen of Yerevan (2014)
“As a chess player one has to be able to control one’s feelings, one has to be as cold as a machine.”
Chess programs are our enemies, they destroy the romance of chess. They take away the beauty of the game. Everything can be calculated.
Chess960 is healthy and good for your chess. If you get into it and not just move the pieces to achieve known positions it improves your chess vision.