Fred Keating

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Todd Karr
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Fred Keating

Postby Todd Karr » March 30th, 2005, 3:53 pm

Hi, everyone:

After two years of work, I have decided to publish my research on multi-talented magician-actor Fred Keating.

Through Keating's family and other sources (including Keating scholar Max Maven), I have traced the amazing story of Keating's life in depth and gathered dozens of rare photographs, as well as fascinating essays written by Keating himself.

Rather than publish a stand-alone Keating book, I've decided to include this material in our upcoming Roy Benson by Starlight as part of a large appendix on "The Roots of Roy Benson." This extensive section will examine the lives and magic of Keating, Judson Cole, and Nate Leipzig (who was Benson and Keating's mentor), three magicians who set the pattern for Benson's career and highly influenced his style (and even some of his early effects).

Levent is just completing his essays for Roy Benson by Starlight, which we're expecting by this summer (yes, late again!). I'd be grateful to anyone who might be able to share material on Keating from their collection!

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Pete Biro
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Pete Biro » March 30th, 2005, 6:48 pm

I emailed you some info on RB
Stay tooned.

Todd Karr
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Todd Karr » March 30th, 2005, 8:09 pm

Thanks, Pete!

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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Guest » March 30th, 2005, 10:16 pm

I have one of the actual Vanishing Bird Cage used by Keating that I got from Sam Schwartz who got it from Jack Malon. And, also some inside stories on Keating. He was called "Queenie" by Tulullah Bankhead and committed suicide at a hotel here in NYC. He almost did it prior at the Madison Square Park Hotel (still in existance) back in the sixties.
BTW Todd, I need to get those last photos I sent you back after you scan them. You can keep the disk.

Todd Karr
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Todd Karr » March 31st, 2005, 8:45 am

Doug: Many thanks for the Benson prop photos, which are on their way back to you. I'd love photos of the Keating cage, too!

This is a good place to let everyone know that Doug has been a great help to our Roy Benson book.

Despondent over his career (he hadn't made a movie since 1940 and was working small nightclubs), Fred Keating made headlines attempting suicide in 1948. He died of a heart attack in 1961 (see the New York Times, July 1, 1961).

His famous quote about Tallulah is, "I've just spent a couple hours talking with Tallulah for a few minutes."

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Pete Biro
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Pete Biro » March 31st, 2005, 4:34 pm

I bought some sheet music that was from a Charliei McCarthy/Bergen movie (has their picture on the cover).

Rubber stamped on it is, if I recall correctly, is "Fred Keating" -- he must have used the tune in his act.
Stay tooned.

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MaxNY
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby MaxNY » March 31st, 2005, 6:49 pm

I believe I have him performing at a Summer Magic Lobster fest held around the 40's in Ossing New York. They come from home movies shot by a young Dr. Morris Young. The fellow that threw the party was.. Meyer??? I will try and get confirmation that it was indeed Keating from Doug tomorrow night. Was he thought to be gay, and had a very young male assistant?

Todd Karr
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Todd Karr » April 1st, 2005, 5:18 am

Exciting news, Max. Fred's homosexuality seems to be pretty well-known and confirmed to me by his family.

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MaxNY
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby MaxNY » April 1st, 2005, 9:11 pm

Todd, Doug and I both attended SAM #1 meeting tonight, and he saw most of the "party" footage shot by Dr. Morris Young, but we seemed to have skipped over the stuff I promised we'd look at, so no answer yet. We have a busy meeting/ lecture week next week, I will try and get confirmation then. We were admiring some footage of this party (circa1938) and a young Professor doing rings! Harry Sr., Flosso with son Jackie (about age 12!) and many others. I also showed my recently discovered, freshly restored, flip-flopped, cepia stripped, newly cropped home movies of Cardini, Ken Krenzel couldn't believe that it existed.
---I mentioned to Levant that I had perhaps the only known footage of the Benson stuff minus the Time Code Burnt into the bottom. Might be willing to trade for one of them leather bound jobbies! Who is doing your DVD?

Todd Karr
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Todd Karr » April 1st, 2005, 11:08 pm

Max: All of this is very good news...send me an email when you have a moment.

Brad Henderson
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Brad Henderson » April 2nd, 2005, 2:23 pm

I have a set of notes with essays/lectures given by both Keating and Benson, also Christopher and Kaplan. Interesting stuff!

Todd Karr
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Re: Fred Keating

Postby Todd Karr » April 2nd, 2005, 6:37 pm

Thanks, Brad. Both Benson and Keating's essays are already included. Wise words from two masters.


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