The Phish New Year’s Eve Dinner and a Movie announcement we’ve been waiting for has arrived, as the band has announced a full-show stream of their first Madison Square Garden New Year’s Eve show, 12/31/95, on its 25th anniversary, December 31st, 2020. Along with the stream—dubbed Dinner and a Rematch—the band will finally settle the score on the long-tied band vs. audience chess competition from the late-1995 tour. Tune in and follow along with our full Dinner and a Rematch Stream Companion here.
As Phish explains in the Dinner and a Rematch announcement,
We’ve teamed up with the fine folks at Chess.com to host the Band vs. Audience online chess game which will start right at the top of the show and move at a decent clip. In short, fans will have 5 minutes to move their piece (the band will have no more than that as well). At the end of 5 minutes, whichever move has the most votes is the ‘audience’ move. Stick around during the set breaks as the band joins in from their various homes, playing a few moves and providing scintillating commentary on the game.
To join the audience in voting for moves against the band, you will first need to become a member of Chess.com. It is free and you can click here to go directly to the registration page. After you verify your account by email, click here to join the official club for the audience side. We will post and send out the actual game link on 12/31.
The band unveiled the plans for this audience chess grudge match with an amusing, ESPN Classic-style documentary about the epic chess contest 25 long years ago, charting the highs and lows of a rivalry which has remained at a 1-1 stalemate ever since. With Queen’s Gambit currently stealing headlines left and right and this milestone anniversary of the storied Phish vs. Audience chess saga approaching, the stakes have never been higher.
Watch the Phish Dinner and a Rematch New Year’s Eve announcement video below:
Phish – “Dinner and a Rematch” – New Year’s Eve 2020 Announcement
Despite the rematch aspect, this 29th installment of Dinner and a Movie still comes with the customary recipes. As the band notes, “Our friend Marissa Mullen put together two options — ‘Olive Cheese Dreams’ and ‘Billy Bries’ — with an easy ‘cheese by numbers’ guide. Feel free to swap out any of the ingredients if there’s something else you prefer. Pair with the bubbly of your choice. For dessert, chessboard cookies! Recipes can be found here.
For this final webcast of the year, Phish’s beneficiary will be none other than The WaterWheel Foundation itself. Since 1997, the band and their fans have collaborated on a nationwide charitable endeavor by raising funds and donating the proceeds across the country. This year alone, the Phish fanbase raised nearly $750,000 for 27 different nonprofits during the Dinner And A Movie series. Donate to The WaterWheel Foundation here.
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The chess-themed New Year’s Eve announcement follows Thursday’s surprise release of a new Page McConnell and Trey Anastasio duo album, December. Listen to December here.