Fred Kaps on DVD?

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Postby Rick Schulz » 03/11/03 11:28 AM

I saw an ad the other night for VHS & DVD's of the Ed Sullivan shows which featured the Beatles (see www.edsullivan.com). Didn't Fred Kaps appear on Ed Sullivan's - on the same night as the Beatles? According to the ad, the VHS/DVD has the complete show including the commercials. Wouldn't it therefore have Fred Kaps?

Are there any other sources of Fred Kaps on video tape or DVD?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 03/11/03 11:30 AM

The DVDs contain only musical acts.
There are NO authorized videos of any kind of Fred Kaps that have been released, though there is plenty of stuff floating around the underground.
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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/11/03 12:22 PM

I recently duplicated three videotapes containing Fred Kaps material for Pete Biro, who plans to donate them to the Magic Castle.

One tape is fairly short and contains Fred performing Pete's Ring on Wineglass routine, plus performances by Johnhy Hart and Marvyn Roy, both on Ed Sullivan.

The second tape has more of Fred's performances, (including some card magic performed in what I assume is Dutch, but the effects are crystal clear anyway), along with performances by Fred, Pete Biro, and Johnny Thompson at a convention in Japan. This tape closes with a lecture Pete gave at the same convention.

The third tape is the real gem. It starts with more of Fred's performances on TV. Then there's a section of home-movie style footage showing Fred Kaps performing for Brother John Hamman. The floating cork, the card to ringbox, the gypsy curse, and Fred's incredible cups and balls routine. (By the way, I'm not a true expert on the cups and balls, but I've seen a lot of such routines, and I was utterly baffled for at least half of Fred's routine. Anyone who does the cups and balls will want to watch this.)

Then this third tape goes on to a couple of instructional videos starring Fred Kaps as, IIRC, Max Mindlin. They're all silent (they remind me very much of Ross Bertram's homemade movies), but it doesn't matter. The first one is coin work, and has some really clever stuff, including a great four-coin vanish from an okito box. The second segment is Fred demonstrating card moves from several classic texts (i.e. Expert Card Technique, etc.)

These instructional segments are fascinating. I can only imagine that they were shot to be released as such. Does anyone know why they weren't?

All three videos will be donated to the Castle library shortly after Pete Biro gets back into town, and I think every magician with a strong interest in the art will want to see them. If you watch them all through you'll get to see 2 or 3 different performances of Fred's Homing Card routine. This by itself is a terrific lesson in perform a trick the exact same way, time after time, and still make it seem new and fresh to the audience.

Pete
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Postby Q. Kumber » 03/11/03 01:25 PM

A terrific tape if you can get hold of it is the Fred Kaps Magic show made by the BBC in the late 70's.

I thought the best thing on it was his Chinese Sticks routine. Years later I saw a tape of Roy Benson also performing the Chinese Sticks. Then I realised where the influence for Fred's routine came from. Same structure but two different personalities.
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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/11/03 02:51 PM

Fred's Chinese Sticks routine is on one of the three tapes that are going to the Castle.
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Postby Guest » 03/11/03 03:51 PM

I don't know the deal on Kapps w/Sulivan but I do believe Peter Pit and several others were on that show like Kalanag, Christopher and even Dunninger. If I'm not mistaken Mr. Blackstone Sr. made one of his last public appearances on the show.

Needless to say, the other big Variety shows of the era have some classic moments too.
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Postby Pete Biro » 03/11/03 04:07 PM

Kaps was on the show with the Beattles aired by Ed Sullivan. Andrew Solt Co., in Hollywood, owns the rights to this. There is another EARLIER tape of a Sullivan show with a YOUNG Kaps on it that shows a manipulative skill like I HAVE NEVER SEEN EQUALLED. Totally different than almost anything any of our generation has seen.

Unfortunately I don't have a copy and to my knowledge no one, other than Sold does.

Solt's people "loaned" it to us for my Kaps lecture, but they were so possessive of it they had their own person play the tape and he never let it out of his hands... hence no chance to duplicate. Argh....

Anyway, my stipulation, with the Castle Library is that NO DUPLICATES BE ALLOWED.

I am working with Kaps' heirs to work out a rights deal to possibly market a set of tapes.

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 03/11/03 04:22 PM

Originally posted by Pete McCabe:
The first one is coin work, and has some really clever stuff, including a great four-coin vanish from an okito box. The second segment is Fred demonstrating card moves from several classic texts (i.e. Expert Card Technique, etc.)

These instructional segments are fascinating. I can only imagine that they were shot to be released as such. Does anyone know why they weren't?
These might be the lecture films. Charles Kalish showed me the Fred Kaps lecture films. One was framed with a dream sequence and the other had the cute coin stuff like the elephant gimick and the coin 'squash' using a coin on a line. These were, as he put it 'expensive' and kept private. That was in 1980. Back then there was no public offering of the material.

Today would be a very good time to collect and preserve the work while those who knew the man are around to make sure it is presented accuratly and those who remember the man can enjoy it.

-Jon
Mundus vult decipi
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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/11/03 05:30 PM

Jonathan:

That's the ones. The elephant coin gimmick is hilarious. To go to all that trouble to produce and vanish a nickel under a playing card! Still the result is incredibly clean. The whole thing strikes me as something Tommy Wonder would come up with.

The three tapes include a few routines showcasing Fred's manipulative work with card fans, dollar bills, and jumbo coins. There's a fascinating little routine which is essentially the Homing Card (the one where the King of Spades keeps returning to the group of five cards, not the repeat card to pocket), but done with bills and a jumbo coin.
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Postby Gary » 03/11/03 06:41 PM

Copies of all three Sullivan shows are around!
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Postby Guest » 03/11/03 06:56 PM

I happened to record the Sullivan show a few weeks ago that contained Kaps doing 6-card repeat, and the Beatles, along with some other acts. Our local PBS channel shows two hours of Sullivan reruns a week and I record them all.
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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/11/03 07:00 PM

Gary Plants:

If you'd like to send along a copy of the Ed Sullivan show that includes the young Fred Kaps doing the greatest manipulative act Pete Biro has ever seen, I'll make a copy and donate it to the Castle library. Pete will vouch for me.
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Postby themaestro » 03/11/03 07:44 PM

Originally posted by Pete McCabe:
[QB Pete will vouch for me.[/QB]
And Nowlin will vouch for me. ;)

When I was in NYC in '91 I watched some videos at the Museuem of Television and Radio. I saw a B&W clip of Kaps doing an incredible Long Salt Pour. I though it was a clip from the Ed Sullivan Show, but I may be wrong.

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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/11/03 11:43 PM

The salt pour. How could I forget? That's on the tapes, twice, I think. I remember seeing this in my childhood.

One thing I learned from watching so many different facets of Fred Kaps is that his most important skill was that he was a terrific actor.
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Postby Gary » 03/12/03 12:38 AM

Pete,

How about if I just donate a copy to the Magic Castle? I am really surprised that they don't have a copy. Pete, are you for sure that the Castle doesn't have a copy of the Sullivan shows?
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Postby Dick Koornwinder » 03/12/03 07:05 PM

By coincidence I have had yesterday a long conversation with one of the daughters of Kaps and also with the brother of Nellie (Bongers) Kaps. So Im a little surprised by Petes posting of March 11.
I am working with Kaps' heirs to work out a rights deal to possibly market a set of tapes.
Especially because the main subject of my conversation with the heirs was the possibility to bring out a legal tape. I can tell you the heirs have had no contact with Biro. BTW bootlegs will not be appreciated. This is an understatement. Even worse.. bootlegs can interfere negotiations about the legal rights.
Fred Kaps appeared three, maybe even four, times in the Sullivan Show. Yes, he was also in the show with the Beatles but the part of Kaps was a recording. During his visit to the states in January 1963, he has done his card manipulation act and the China sticks live and a recording has been made of the homing cards and the long salt pour. Kaps noticed to his horror that in departments stores/drugstores China sticks were for sale in the magic corner. He has really considered not to do the trick. Sullivan insisted however he would perform the sticks. Sullivan saw Kaps performing in the summer of 1962 in Denmark and he was very pleased with the China sticks and that was one of the reasons he was invited for the show. A major newspaper in the Netherlands had the headline: President Kennedy saw the performance of Fred Kaps. What happened?? In the same show was Sammy Davis Jr. and he was in the company of Peter Lawford, the brother in law of Kennedy. Lawford told he just phoned with the president and the president assured Lawford that he would watch the show with the whole family for sure to see the performance of.Sammy Davis Jr. Tapes of the Sullivan shows must be available in the US. It is already quite some years ago the widow of Kaps received a letter, with a contract, from the legal owners of the Sullivan material with the request to sign the contract to make it possible to bring out videotapes. I handled that correspondence and I can assure you Nellie has peen paid promptly. In another Sullivan Show Kaps has performed the rabbit from a cane. Jay Marshall has bought that item at an auction. Frances wrote in her column in the Linking Ring: Jay arrived home with a metal pipe with two ears inside. I hope he has not paid too much for it.
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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/12/03 07:13 PM

Gary Plants:

Sure, you can donate the tape to the Castle. But then how will I make a copy for myself? :-)

By the way I don't know if the Castle does or doesn't have a copy of the Sullivan shows already. All I know is Pete Biro needed someone to dupe some tapes and I volunteered. Just getting to watch the tapes was well worth the time and the blank tapes I spent.
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Postby Brad Jeffers » 03/18/03 05:29 PM

Currently on Ebay there is an hour long Fred Kaps DVD listed. It is item # 2165008236. Also listed by the same seller are videos and DVD's of Slydini, Cardini, Neil Foster, Richard Ross and one that is especially interesting - a 90 minute video of Frank Garcia that the seller says is material that has never been commercially released. This fellow lists these items fairly regularly. I would be interested in hearing feedback from anyone who has purchased any of these.
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Postby Guest » 03/18/03 09:21 PM

I bought the Frank Garcia tape, and it was pretty darn good; long, with very clear detailed explanations. It was very good for a homemade job.

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Postby Dick Koornwinder » 03/19/03 06:15 AM

If you you look at sellers other items it looks if this fellow (voyant100) on Ebay is specialized in bootlegs. The bidding is slow. I think the seller is using Ebay as a window to promote his tapes and DVDs. I regret by this posting Im also promoting his business. It is fun to read the feedback reviews and especially the reactions of voyant100 on complaints.

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Postby Guest » 03/19/03 10:54 AM

I just received the Ed Sullivan DVDs that I saw advertised on television, which Rick refers to at the beginning of this thread. I ordered it on-line at www.edsullivan.com.

The first DVD contains the February 9th and 16th, 1964 Ed Sullivan shows featuring, of course, the Beatles. The fifth chapter on this DVD from the February 9th show is Fred Kaps performing a card trick followed by the long pour salt trick. He is definitely on the DVD -- I just got finished watching his performance.

I paid about $45 for the two DVDs, which includes shipping and handling.
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Postby Rick Schulz » 03/19/03 12:17 PM

Thanks for the update! I was wondering how they could advertise "the complete show, including commercials" but not have Fred Kaps' performance. I was prepared to chalk it up to "truth in advertising".

I am still waiting (about 6 weeks now) for a tape from voyant that I purchased on E-Bay. Caveat emptor.
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Postby Gary » 03/19/03 09:11 PM

Fantasio is also supposed to be on this dvd set...according to the ad.
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Postby Guest » 03/20/03 04:48 AM

Dear Friends,
I just heard of a person selling a tape/dvd of Richard's act at http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... gory=14014

This is not correct.
Can anyone help me with how to stop this person from selling this on ebay? I understand Ebay can prevent illegal ietms from being sold there.

My email address is ross@magicart.nl

Thank you.
Vronique Ross
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Postby IanB » 03/20/03 07:05 AM

It looks like these have been pulled prematurely from ebay without any being sold - so hopefully no further problems for Veronique.

It does, however, bring up questions about the legal and ethical status of "home movie" type footage.

I'm assuming that these get into circulation by being passed "underground" from friend to friend until they suddenly reach someone who decides they want to make a buck from it and makes a bunch of copies to sell on ebay.

Knowing nothing about copyright, what is the legal status of these things? Is it possible to get a legitimate, ethical copy - or are they all bound to be dodgy? Would one have to demand to know the provenance of each item from the seller to ensure it was OK? And what would be OK - approval from the heirs? If it's convention footage, who owns the copyright to that, for example? Help.......

I must admit that without seeing the messages above on the board I would have been sorely tempted to bid for these (and the other rare footage items from the same seller). Now I know that they're being sold against the wishes of the heirs, of course I won't (I'll just wish they were available some other way).

Rgds,

Ian
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Postby Guest » 04/11/03 04:57 PM

I have a video titled " The Magic Of The Ed Sullivan Show " It has Fred Kaps performing...are you ready for this...Rabbit From Cane. I almost crapped when he pulled the rabbit out of the cane. There are several other magic performers but I can't remember the names (50 years old and a case of sometimers )haven't looked at it in a while.
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Postby Ira Rush » 04/12/03 07:29 AM

Speaking of Fred Kaps, I seem to remember reading in one of the earlier "Kaufman" era Genii issues, that Mike Caveney's and his Magic Words was supposed to have been in the process of publishing a major work on Kaps.

What's the story on this, I checked the web site recently and no listing for any Kaps book.

Is this so?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 04/12/03 08:35 AM

Ira, There is no Kaps book at the moment. Caveney made a deal with Dick Kornwinder to write the book many years ago, but I've never heard that the book actually was written. Since Kornwinder sometimes contributes to this forum, I had hoped he would discuss the project, but he doesn't seem inclined to do so!
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Postby Ira Rush » 04/12/03 12:15 PM

Richard,

Thanks for the update.

Aside from some random items I have such as "Kaps on Coins" a 11 page booklet, "Fred Kaps Lecture Book" an 8 or 9 page booklet and a book titled "Fred Kaps" from Hades Publications are their any other items out there with his work?
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Postby Joe Pecore » 04/12/03 06:45 PM

I have "Kaps on Kards" a 4 page booklet. No information like author,date,copyright,publisher, etc. is included. Looks like it was done with typewriter.

- Joe

Originally posted by Ira Rush:
Richard,

Thanks for the update.

Aside from some random items I have such as [b] "Kaps on Coins"
a 11 page booklet, "Fred Kaps Lecture Book" an 8 or 9 page booklet and a book titled "Fred Kaps" from Hades Publications are their any other items out there with his work?[/b]
Share your knowledge on the MagicPedia wiki.
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Postby Guest » 04/12/03 07:04 PM

At my local magic dealer, they have a DVD of Fred Kaps performing a dozen or so items. THe box front and rear panels seem professionally done. Are these DVD's bootlegs?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 04/12/03 09:34 PM

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm
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Postby IanB » 04/14/03 11:05 AM

Martin Breese ( www.martinbreese.com or www.abracadabra.co.uk for those of us in the UK) has a Fred Kaps lecture on CD. It's his 1965 lecture from the Magic Circle. I believe it also comes with a transcript.

Look in the Exclusives section on the US website.

Rgds,

Ian
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Postby Carl Mercurio » 04/14/03 12:32 PM

I'm a big fan of the Kaps coins routine in Routined Manipulation. I essentially use phase one of this routine to music for my Miser's Dream. Would love to see some footage of Kaps....
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Postby BrendanK » 04/14/03 12:39 PM

I believe Stevens Magic Emporium still sell The Ken Brooke Series of Booklets.
Number 5 is "The Dancing and Floating Cork" -Kaps'performance described as "the greatest close-up trick I have ever seen in my life" Ken Brooke.
cheers
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Postby Ira Rush » 04/15/03 05:49 AM

A big Thank You, to all of you that provided additional sources (print/video) on Kaps and his routines.
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Postby Guest » 05/08/03 10:03 AM

Does anyone know if Kaps performs the card to ring box on the above mentioned CD from Martin Breese..Thanks
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Postby Pete McCabe » 05/08/03 10:26 AM

Tom Witcomb asks:

Does anyone know if Kaps performs the card to ring box on the above mentioned CD from Martin Breese
Tom, I'm not sure about the CD, but the next time you're at the Castle if you look at the video Pete Biro donated to the library, you can see home-movie-style footage of Fred performing this trick for Brother John Hamman.
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 05/08/03 11:41 AM

Originally posted by Tom Witcomb:
Does anyone know if Kaps performs the card to ring box on the above mentioned CD from Martin Breese..Thanks
No, I don't think that he does. I'll double check this weekend when I'm back in my dorm at school, where the CD is.

-Jim
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Postby Guest » 10/16/05 07:54 PM

Originally posted by Pete Biro:
Kaps was on the show with the Beattles aired by Ed Sullivan. Andrew Solt Co., in Hollywood, owns the rights to this. There is another EARLIER tape of a Sullivan show with a YOUNG Kaps on it that shows a manipulative skill like I HAVE NEVER SEEN EQUALLED. Totally different than almost anything any of our generation has seen.

Unfortunately I don't have a copy and to my knowledge no one, other than Sold does.

Solt's people "loaned" it to us for my Kaps lecture, but they were so possessive of it they had their own person play the tape and he never let it out of his hands... hence no chance to duplicate. Argh....

Anyway, my stipulation, with the Castle Library is that NO DUPLICATES BE ALLOWED.

I am working with Kaps' heirs to work out a rights deal to possibly market a set of tapes.

Stay tooned....
Which Beatles on Ed Sullivan was it Pete
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