World Champion Says the Violin and Rubik’s Cube Go Together Well

One of the best “speedcubers” in the world, a person who can solve a Rubik’s Cube quickly, is a University of Michigan student. He is a gifted violinist as well. Stanley Chapel claims there is good synergy between the two pursuits. He continues, saying he’s equally interested in both. However, the 21-year-old claims that playing the violin has improved his speedcubing. Chapel attends the university’s School of Music, Theater, and Dance to study violin performance. He claimed that concepts from studying music, such repetition and “breaking things down into their smallest” pieces, improved his cubing.

Chapel was raised in Ann Arbor, which is close to the University of Michigan. At the age of 14, he deciphered his first 3×3 Rubik’s Cube. Chapel participated in his first tournament five weeks later and solved the cube in an average of 22 seconds. Chapel finished seventh in the World Cube Association World Championship’s 4×4 blindfolded and 5×5 blindfolded groups in Paris in 2017. He won both events at the 2019 World Championship held in Melbourne, Australia. Chapel can solve one in about 17 seconds if you factor in the time it takes him to analyze the cube before covering his eyes with the blindfold. “I’m more interested in pushing the limits of what’s possible there the more I study cubing technique,” he said.

Chapel possesses a few powerful innate skills. He is capable of recalling thousands of solutions to a Rubik’s Cube and can play a violin composition by Johann Sebastian Bach off-hand. However, Chapel also puts in a lot of hours honing his abilities. He also regularly exercises his hands, which helps him prevent the kind of aches and pains that result from spending so much time twisting the sides of the cube. Chapel claims that having “very, very fine motor control already built up” is another benefit of his years of violin playing. Chapel intends to defend his world titles in South Korea later this year. Chapel, though, is unsure of how speedcubing will fit into his plans after graduation.


Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.