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Jutta Hempel
J Hempel 
Six year old Jutta Hempel simultaneously re-playing by heart six famous mastergames at Gluecksburg, Northern Germany on August 13th, 1967. In the upper right is Ludwig Rellstab. Photograph copyright 1967 by Stern magazine, issue 40, provided courtesy of Juergen Nickel from the book Der Flensburger Schachklub von 1876 im Spiegel der Zeit.
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Number of games in database: 27
Years covered: 1966 to 1977
Overall record: +8 -11 =8 (44.4%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

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C40 King's Knight Opening (21 games)
A02 Bird's Opening (2 games)

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(born Sep-27-1960, 61 years old) Germany

[what is this?]

Jutta Hempel was born in Flensburg, Germany, in 1960. At age 3, Jutta could watch a chess game and replay it by memory. At age 4, she was playing chess at the town Youth Center. By age 5, she was the top junior player in the town. On her 6th birthday, she played 12 others in a simul and won 9.5-2.5 in four hours. In her next simul in the town square, she won 9-1. At age 7, she won the Flensburg junior championship. She then played 6 games blindfolded simultaneously. At age 8, she was performing even more simuls, some of which were broadcast on television. At age 9, she won a problem-solving contest. She drew two games against International Master Jens Enevoldsen.

Upon reaching maturity, Jutta turned her attention towards family life and did not pursue a career in chess. Some details of her later life up to her marriage in 1986 are known from a letter by her father.*

Wikipedia article: Jutta Hempel * (scroll down) Footage of Hempel as a girl:

Last updated: 2018-10-23 22:18:47

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 27  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. J Hempel vs Hecht 0-1351966FRGA02 Bird's Opening
2. K Dietrich vs J Hempel 0-1231966ExhibitionC57 Two Knights
3. J Hempel vs Fr Olle  1-0421967FlensburgA02 Bird's Opening
4. J Hempel vs E Pritchard 0-1171967Radio gameC50 Giuoco Piano
5. E Pritchard vs J Hempel 1-061967Radio gameC40 King's Knight Opening
6. Schmidt vs J Hempel 0-1301969FlensburgC40 King's Knight Opening
7. NN vs J Hempel  0-1291969SimulC40 King's Knight Opening
8. J Hempel vs P Atars  ½-½271970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
9. P Atars vs J Hempel  ½-½291970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
10. K Grivainis vs J Hempel  ½-½251970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
11. I Budovskis vs J Hempel  1-0351970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
12. H G Gunderam vs J Hempel  1-0331970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
13. J S Morgado vs J Hempel  1-0271970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
14. R Castelli vs J Hempel 1-0271970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
15. A Grava vs J Hempel  1-0261970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
16. J Hempel vs A Grava ½-½311970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
17. J Hempel vs O Dravnieks ½-½271970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
18. J Hempel vs R Castelli  0-1331970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
19. J Hempel vs H G Gunderam 1-0331970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
20. J Hempel vs C Priede 1-0181970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
21. O Dravnieks vs J Hempel 0-1451970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
22. M Callinan vs J Hempel 0-1241970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
23. K Grivainis vs J Hempel  ½-½251970Betins mem corr7073C40 King's Knight Opening
24. A Moltrecht vs J Hempel ½-½291970SimulC40 King's Knight Opening
25. J Hempel vs J S Morgado  0-1331972Latvian gam theme corrC40 King's Knight Opening
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 27  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Hempel wins | Hempel loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Aug-01-05  buscher07: <Robin01> Many girls give up chess because it is a male dominated sport and they feel awkward in a situation, such as a chess tournament, that is male dominated. Susan Polgar is doing lovely work promoting chess for young people, especially girls, so hopefully the chess world won't miss out on another brilliant player.
Premium Chessgames Member
  wwall: An article on Jutta Hempel appeared in the November-December, 1971, issue of the California Chess Reporter.
Jul-30-08  twinlark: <wwall>

Bill, could you provide some extracts from that article? Googling Jutta Hempel produces all of 5 hits, two of them relating to this page, and none to the article.

It would be fascinating to hear about this kid...I can still remember the awe with which she was spoken about in the 60s.

It also seems that Harald Balló wrote a book about Wunderkinder, including Hempel along with Capablanca, Morphy and others. Unfortunately it's in German, but he has a website at .

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Sehr hart und überspitzt, aber sicher auch treffend formulierte es einmal 'Der Spiegel':

"Eine der spärlichen weiblichen Frühbegabungen, Jutta Hempel aus Flensburg, die in den sechziger Jahren zum Beispiel durch eine 48zügige Blindpartie glänzte, erwies sich als Shownummer: Ihre Fähigkeit bestand in erster Linie im bloßen Auswendiglernen, zu schöpferischem Schachspiel war sie unfähig."


Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Here is an old 'Der Spiegel' article dated 1966-12-12 reporting about a simultan of Jutta:

Aside of other Wundekind trivia and gossip this is about her:

Im "Gasthof Simon" in Streichmühle bei Flensburg spielten 20 gestandene Schachspieler simultan gegen denselben Gegner. Keiner von ihnen vermochte seine Partie zu gewinnen. Dabei hatten sie gegen ein Mädchen im Kindergartenalter gespielt: Jutta Hempel, 6. ...
<Ich würde empfehlen: Unterlassen Sie das>, kommentierte Schach-Experte Alfred Brinckmann dagegen die Simultan-Schau der erstaunlichen Flensburgerin Jutta Hempel vor Reportern und Fernseh-Kameras. Das Mädchen hat von seinem Vater, einem früheren Flensburger Schachmeister, sogar komplizierte Eröffnungen über 15 bis 18 Züge gelernt.

Nach zehn Partien und sechs Siegen in Streichmühle war Jutta Hempel jedoch erschöpft. Die ausstehenden Spiele beendete ihr Vater.

Aug-01-08  twinlark: <whiteshark>

Could you translate these passages?

Premium Chessgames Member
  valiant: <From Whiteshark's forum>

valiant: "... zu schöpferischem Schachspiel war sie unfähig." Whiteshark, is it really possible to become a Landesmeisterinnen in Schleswig-Holstein without this Fähigkeit? Oddish...

whiteshark: I don't know. And I've not more information than given on her page. She was champion of (the City of) Flensburg (less than 98,000 inhabitants around 1966).

I'll think about it and revert tomorrow on Jutta Hempel page. :D

valiant: Ok... And als sie sechszehn Jahre alt war, she was crowned Landesmeisterinnen of Schleswig-Holstein (popul. = Hamburg + suburbs)

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Is 'I lied like a trooper' a petty excuse ? :D
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <Valiant>

Between both 'Spiegel'-articles is a period of 12 years, the second of the above from 1966 and the first one from 1988.

The commemorable/disputable comment <... zu schöpferischem Schachspiel war sie unfähig.> was from 1988. The main topic in the 1988 article was the Polgar-family and their succesful 'chess-business'. In this context Juppa Hempel was used as a not successful example of chess education.

I think there is a element of truth in it. At least today you would expect a bigger development in strength between 6 and 16 (if you think of Short/Karjakin/Lahno to name a few).

So to me it looks as if her talent was burned out in her early years for show events.

Sep-04-09  JaneEyre: Some more info on Ms. Hempel from the September 1972 BCM.

<Jutta Hempel was born on 27 September 1960 at Flensburg, a German town near the Danish border. A chessplayer visiting her home took out his men and board. Three-year old Jutta became fascinated by the 'little dolls'. It soon led to a set of her own from her father. She made rapid progress, and at four years age was defeating her 'old' opponents at a local club for juniors. At six, in front of T.V. cameras, on 27 November 1966, she gave a simultaneous exhibition against 12 opponents, scoring 9.5. Four weeks later, before interested American T.V. cameras, she scored 9 points against 10 opponents. A little later she won a game from Baden chmpion W. Lauterbach. Like young Reshevsky, young Jutta has also been going around giving exhibitions. She has also made rapid progress in solving problems.[...] Professor K.H. Luckert of Munich University submitted her to some tests in 1967 and declared her to be a 'unique infant prodigy'.>

A game of hers is given which I'll submit through the usual channel.

Jan-22-10  Milzgebaren: I know Jutta Hempel from my time in the Flensburg chess club. She is 4 years younger than I.

She was especially good at blitz, but in normal chess she was not exactly a star in our club, rather middle class. With the white pieces, she often open with a3.

In her young years, she also took part in the German ladies competition. For her age she was amazingly good.

It is a pity that she gave up playing chess, and I don't know why. This was after I moved away from Flensburg for studying in Kiel.

Premium Chessgames Member
  wwall: Here is a link to a video clip of Jutta playing a simul at age 6.
Jun-26-10  Gejewe: Some additional gamescores from Jutta Hempel games. Being interested in the same kind of openings that she played - though around 1973, somewhat later - this material was found in Gunderam's "Neue Eröffnungswege" (2nd printing,1972) In those days I have also seen a game that Jutta Hempel lost to Hans Joachim Hecht ( if I am not mistaken ) in 1966, where she reproduced a long theoretical line after 1.f4 e5 2.fxe5 d6 3.exd6 Bxd6 4.Nf3 g5 5.d4 g4 6.Ng5 f5 7.e4 h6 8.e5 Be7 9.Nh3 gxh3 10.Qh5+ Kf8 11.Bc4, but black knew what he was doing, played the right move (11..Rh7 ,instead of 11..Qe8 12.Qxh3 with abundant compensation) and eventually won the game. I have not been able to trace that game today, but it might have been published in "Schakend Nederland" where the editor probably found it in some German publication. This was supposed to be her father's petline, besides the Latvian gambit with the black pieces. Eight year old Jutta Hempel played in the final of a Latvian gambit thematic tournament, by correspondence :

Grivainis, K.- Hempel, Jutta Corr. 1969
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. Nxe5 Qf6 4. d4 d6 5. Nc4 fxe4 6. Nc3 Qg6 7. f3 exf3 8. Qxf3 Nc6 9. Bd3 Qg4 10. Qf2 Qxd4 11. Be3 Qf6 12. Qe2 Be6 13. Ne4 Qe7 14. Bg5 Nf6 15. O-O Bxc4 16. Bxc4 Qxe4 17. Qxe4+ Nxe4 18. Rae1 Ne5 19. Rxe4 Kd7 20. Bh4 c6 21. Bg3 Re8 22. Bxe5 Rxe5 23. Rf7+ Re7 24. Rexe7+ Bxe7 25. Rxg7 d5 1/2-1/2

Callinan, M. - Hempel, Jutta Corr. 1969
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. exf5 Nc6 4. d4 exd4 5. Nxd4 Nxd4 6. Qxd4 Qf6 7. Qe4+ Qe7 8. Bd3 Qxe4+ 9. Bxe4 Nf6 10. Bd3 d5 11. Nc3 c6 12. Bg5 Kf7 13. O-O Bd6 14. Rae1 h6 15. Bh4 Bd7 16. Re2 Rae8 17. Rfe1 Rxe2 18. Rxe2 a6 19. Na4 c5 20. Nb6 c4 21. Bxc4 dxc4 22. Bxf6 gxf6 23. Nxd7 Rd8 24. Nb6 Bc5 0-1

Dravnieks, O.- Hempel, Jutta Corr. 1969
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. Bc4 fxe4 4. Nxe5 d5 5. Qh5+ g6 6. Nxg6 Nf6 7. Qe5+ Be7 8. Bb5+ c6 9. Nxe7 Qxe7 10. Qxe7+ Kxe7 11. Be2 Rg8 12. g3 c5 13. f3 Bf5 14. c3 Nc6 15. f4 Bh3 16. d3 d4 17. dxe4 Bg2 18. Rg1 Bxe4 19. Nd2 Bc2 20. Nb3 d3 21. Bd1 Bxd1 22. Kxd1 c4 23. Nd2 b5 24. Nf1 Rge8 25. Be3 Kf7 26. Kd2 Re7 27. Re1 Rae8 28. h3 a5 29. a3 Nd5 30. b3 b4 31. bxc4 Nxc3 32. Rg2 ( If 32. Kxd3 Rd7+ 33. Kc2 Nd4+ 34. Bxd4 Rxe1 35. Bxc3 bxc3 36. Kxc3 Rdd1 wins ) 32... Nd4 33. Kxd3 Rd7 34. axb4 axb4 35. Bxd4 Rxe1 36. Ne3 Rxd4+ 37. Kxd4 Ne2+ 38. Kd3 b3 39. Nd1 Rxd1+ 40. Kxe2 b2 41. Kxd1 b1=Q+ 42. Ke2 Qe4+ 43. Kf2 Qxc4 44. Kf3 Qf1+ 0-1

Atars, P. - Hempel, Jutta Corr. 1969
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. Bc4 fxe4 4. Nxe5 d5 5. Qh5+ g6 6. Nxg6 Nf6 7. Qe5+ Be7 8. Nxe7 Qxe7 9. Qxe7+ Kxe7 10. Be2 Rg8 11. g3 Nc6 12. h3 d4 13. b3 Be6 14. Na3 a6 15. Bb2 b5 16. O-O-O Rad8 17. g4 Nd5 18. c4 Nf4 19. Bf1 Nb4 20. Kb1 Nbd3 21. Bxd3 Nxd3 22. cxb5 Nxf2 23. bxa6 Nxh1 24. Rxh1 d3 25. Nb5 c6 26. Nc3 e3 27. dxe3 d2 28. Rd1 Rd3 29. e4 1/2-1/2

For an eight year old, this is amazing play, even considering it is correspondence chess. But maybe her father, a strong clubplayer, lend a hand ? The following game however, she surely played all by herself, giving a simultaneous. Remember, a nine year old girl handling several other boards, against a clubplayer ..

Moltrecht - Hempel, Jutta
Simultaneous given by Jutta Hempel, 1970.04.13
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. Nxe5 Qf6 4. d4 d6 5. Nf3 (5. Nc4) 5... fxe4 6. Qe2 d5 7. h3 h6 8. c3 Bd6 9. Nh2 Be6 10. Qb5+ Nd7 11. Qxb7 Rb8 12. Qxa7 Ne7 13. Qa6 O-O 14. Qe2 Rf7 15. b3 Rbf8 16. Be3 Bf4 17. Bxf4 Qxf4 18. Nd2 Qxf2+ 19. Qxf2 Rxf2 20. a4 e3 21. Ndf3 Rc2 22. Rb1 Rxc3 23. Ke2 Rb8 24. b4 Rc4 (Better 24... Bf5) 25. Kxe3 Rcxb4 26. Bb5 Rxb1 27. Rxb1 c6 (27... Bf5 wins) 28. Bd3 Rxb1 29.Bxb1 [ And Jutta accepted white's drawoffer ] 1/2-1/2 I condensed Rellstab's notes to this game.

Her father also experimented with 1.c3 e5 2.e4 Nf6 3.f4!?, a reversed Latvian gambit where the extra move c3.. comes in handy in several lines...

Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: what might have been
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: There seem to be a lot of prodigies who either give up chess early, or would prefer to do so. At times, they seem almost resentful of their skill at the game.

Morphy comes to mind immediately. Capablanca and Reshevsky played throughout their lives, but didn't seem to exhibit the sheer enjoyment of the game as a Marshall or a Bronstein or a Tal could.

Of course, it was often the pressure of "making a living" that forced many young Masters to stop playing. But why didn't they come back, even for an occasional "just for fun" game? Perhaps their killer instinct had been overdeveloped so early that they could get pleasure only from winning, not from the game itself.

Jetta Hempel seemed to spend most of her time either studying or giving exhibitions, not just having fun with the game. Small wonder it didn't appeal to her in maturity.

It may have been our loss, but she's probably much happier.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Fusilli: Wise words, <PB>. I think you nailed it right on the head.
Premium Chessgames Member Thanks to a certain chessgames member from Spain who dug up two dozen more games by Jutta.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nightsurfer: Muchissimas gracias por la contribucion del aficionado en ESPANA ... ESTUPENDO! Some interesting new aspects with regard to the all too short career of Jutta Hempel!
Dec-29-10  sneaky pete: Hempel vs Hecht, 1966 is the game against GM Hecht <Gejewe> referred to earlier.
Dec-23-11  Karpova: C.N. 7413 shows another picture of her and has additional information from older C.N.s, among them C.N. 1293:

<Mr Hempel gives details of his daughter’s subsequent performances, but it is her early achievements that interest us most. He stresses that no girl aged five-six has matched her chess strength, but he resists the description ‘Wunderkind’. The last time she played was on 2 June 1979, at the Flensburg Lightning Tournament, in which she came first without losing a game. That year she went on to further education in Kiel, in accordance with her own belief, ‘First study, find a profession and then perhaps start playing again’. As she was interested in Business Studies she spent two and a half years as an employee in a Danish bank, after which she continued as a student in Kiel until the end of 1985. In the New Year she started work at the Land Bank in Kiel. On 6 June 1986 she married, and is now called Hempel-Nissen. Today she says: ‘A woman cannot earn a living from chess. But if I have children I will teach them to play, because chess has been a great help to me with everything.’>


Jan-30-12  kia0708: I saw her on youtube, on a video made in 1967. Incredible little girl playing simul with 12 pro players.

One funny thing they said in that video, that she called the chess pieces as "dolls" :-)

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: The C.N. 7413 article provided by <Karpova> is now stored here:
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Footage on Jutta Hempel:

<Description: Girl chess prodigy.>

Various shots 6 year old Jutta Hempel going along road on her scooter. Various shots Jutta playing football with boys. Interior shots Jutta standing at table where she is playing 12 men at chess. C/U Jutta. C/U of the men concentrating. C/U as Jutta makes a move. M/S as she completes the move, then goes along to the next game. C/U as she moves along tables. C/U as Jutta makes another move. C/U man looking baffled. C/U's of the other players M/S as Jutta makes a move. C/U Jutta chewing toffee. C/U of her feet as she leans against table. C/U as she makes a move taking one of her opponent's pieces. M/S as she moves along table to next game. C/U Jutta facing elderly man. C/U as Jutta makes her final move in the game. C/U Jutta smiling.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: season's greetings to all :)
Oct-12-20  login:

After years 'under the radar', she was leading a normal life raising a family and completely out of the public she resurfaced again for the first time around 2014 to sit down and have a proper chat with Jürgen Nickel, chronist for the 'Flensburger Schachklub von 1876' and autor for Arno Nickel publishing company Edition Marco.

Excerpts (in German)

Hallo, ich bin das Wunderkind!

'.. Jutta schwebt herein, lebhaft und selbstsicher, das Eis sofort brechend mit einem Scherz voller Selbstironie: „Hallo, ich bin das Wunderkind!“. Ihre Augen funkeln wie vorJahrzehnten, diese Augen, die sofort alles im Blick haben, so wie sie damals schon die 64 Felder so rasch erfassten. Das war schon immer ihre Stärke gewesen: Der schnelle Überblick, das augenblickliche Begreifen der Situation, nichts von Flüchtigkeit, sondern alles festhaltend, um sorgsam abwägend, daraus ihre Schlüsse zuziehen: Urteil und Plan, wie Max Euwe eines seiner Werke tituliert hat. ..'

Her father Hermann Hempel was a chessplayer (1800-1900 Elo) in Flensburg too. He taught Jutta chess (in her own words) right at the beginning by not focusing on boring whole game studies or opening drills, but rather by introducing examples of interesting middle game positions with less pieces on the board. She enjoyed finding mating patterns there and/or just playing through rook endgames. The usual three year old prodigy stuff.

Visit the Nickels over at

Flensburger Schachklub von 1876

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