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Topic: A book about the magic of Fred Kaps?
Message: Posted by: Steve Cook (Aug 31, 2007 11:43AM)
Probably an impossibility for anyone to write of Kaps magic, as he took most of it
with him when he left us in 1980. What a diabolical shame it was never done! If someone other than Kaps had to write it then, there are a few people who may have had the knowledge to produce such a work, had they stiil been around: Phillipe Fialho, Fred Robinson (possibly), Bro' John Hamman... and, I'm sure today that guys such as Pete Biro, Barry Stevenson, Piet Forton and a few others could contribute some worthwhile stuff. The best candidate however, in my opinion, would have been the late, great, Ken brooke; Fred Kaps' close friend and confidant. Let's be honest, who magically, wrote better and more entertainingly than Ken?
Now that would have been a book to crave for! Ah well...
Message: Posted by: RS1963 (Aug 31, 2007 02:15PM)
Dik Koornwinder (A very inventive Dutch magician) has or was working on a book of Fred Kaps magic. I don't know if it is still being written or if the project is still even in the works.

I do know Koornwinder was a good friend of Kaps so he would be a very good one to write such a book.

Hopefully the book is still in the works and will see the light of day very soon!

Message: Posted by: Steve Cook (Aug 31, 2007 04:11PM)
Hi Randy, Yes, I've heard about the Koornwinder book and yes, he was a good friend of Kaps, however, I've heard nothing positive about the book for a long while.
There are (and were) a good number of magicians who knew Kaps very well and, were
aware of many of the subtle methods he employed, including: Ger Copper (another fine Dutch magician), Trevor Lewis, Ricky Jay, Tonny Van Rhee and so on. I'm
sure that if Dick Koornwinder produces such a book, that it will be a very worthy effort. I still however, go back to my original post in that I honestly believe that
whoever writes it today (if anyone ever does), then it will be a very difficult task, due mainly to the lack of information available on Kaps' effects, technique and methodology, which (as far as I'm aware) he never really wrote up to any degree. I hope someone proves me wrong! Such a project would be a great challenge to anyone with the patience, resolve, fortitude and tenacity to attempt it. I sincerely hope that such a book comes to fruition and, I eagerly await any positive news. I still would have loved to have seen Ken Brooke write such a book!
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Aug 31, 2007 05:22PM)
Thre is no "lack of information" as Kaps kept copius notes on everything. Every trick, move, idea, etc. and Koornwinder has that collection of his notes as well as all the correspondence from all Fred's friends (over 100 letters from me alone).

It is just a matter of Dick getting down to work on it. I takes a lot of time and every once in awhile he does get on with it.
Message: Posted by: Steve Cook (Sep 1, 2007 01:40AM)
Thanks for that Pete. Pat Page once mentioned that Kaps had a personal notebook
in which he recorded everything worth recording (as of course most creative magicians do) but, I didn't know that Dick Koornwinder had his collection of notes. It's a daunting task,
not just to produce such a work but, to produce one worthy of the great man's
memory and, truly representative of his unique talent. I wish Dick Koornwinder
well and look forward to it with baited breath!
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Sep 3, 2007 03:09PM)
Fred Kap's work is my favorite too. Let's hope the work can be completed sooner.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Oct 6, 2007 02:02PM)
Hey, if he needs help writing it, I'm available. But, who can afford to go to Holland on what little I make.
Message: Posted by: Bob Sanders (Oct 6, 2007 08:58PM)
I hope this work does get done. But as best I remember, Fred Kaps had trouble with numbers himself.

I look forward to seeing the finished goods.

Bob Sanders
Magic By Sander
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Oct 8, 2007 02:16AM)
I would like to help out, but I’m sure the main problem is that Fred Kaps notes were probably in Dutch. I wouldn’t be able to read them. I would be able to help put it together. I don’t like to procrastinate.

Or maybe Dik can use an illustrator. But, whatever, I know I would love to see a book on Kaps in print. I have the one that was compiled by Freddie Jelsma. It was a good book, but short. I wish it could have been longer.

Maybe something can be worked out. There is a need for a comprehensive book on Fred Kaps. Dik Koornwinder is in the perfect position to write such a book.
Message: Posted by: helder (Jan 1, 2015 03:04PM)
Any news about this book?
Message: Posted by: Kondini (Jan 29, 2015 08:29AM)
In Kens Studio 145 Wardour Street Ken had the Magic of Kaps book on display. When anyone opened it, it turned out to be a book full of blank pages. Such was the interest in Kaps and the naughtyness of Ken.

There were many other gags played out in the studio (My favorite was the self lighting bulb) to make the bulb light up Ken would bang on the floor (Which was the ceiling to the Café directly below) Then the bulb would light up or go out accordingly !!!!! Guess how many visitors called into the Café on the way out from Brookies all trying to figure out what or who below controlled the bulb. Remember (Scotty York bulb).
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Mar 1, 2015 02:19AM)
Helder, I too was wondering how far along Dik Koornwinder is on the Kaps book. I know many who would be interested in this legendary figure.
Message: Posted by: Vogler (Mar 18, 2015 01:13PM)
Iam VERY interested in this book. It is a shame that we don't have a book for this great performer. He was one of the best magicians ever! But who can teach the charm and the beauty? He was a master technician, but hiispersonality made the magic. Still I want this book!
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Mar 18, 2015 05:32PM)
There is a very short book on Kaps, but not the kind that was done by Levent for both Cardini and Benson. I think it is high time that it is done. Like I said, a few years ago, I would be willing to work with Koornwinder if he needs help, but I do not have the mountain of info that is needed to do the job by myself. Most of the info I got for the Wiki page I wrote was based on that short book. That and the info I read from the Grand Prix.
Message: Posted by: Merc Man (Mar 25, 2015 03:31AM)
If Fred Kaps was still on this planet and reading this thread, he'd no doubt have a chuckle.

The fact is most of what Fred performed, whether on stage or close-up, is already out there, and has been for many, many years! The difference is Fred performed it impeccably; with his own charm, charisma and style. Yes, he'd sometimes use his own handling. But this was because certain moves suited him better.

So why do you want a Fred Kaps book - to become, at very best, a copy of the great man himself?

Fred did in fact release a couple of booklets - wherein tricks had been sufficiently altered, and to share his spin on things. But to the most part, what he performed is ALREADY out there; often within the pages of 'the classics'. Maybe that's why Fred never wanted a book published in his name? Think about it.

If you are that interested, go look for it........the same way that he did!

I can't believe why anyone who is so interested in the guy, and his magic, doesn't already know this. But then again, in today's world, everyone wants to be spoon-fed.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Mar 27, 2015 12:37PM)
Many reasons. I would love to read a comprehensive bio on the great man. Second, by studying his methods, you can learn the most important thing about him as a magician and that is his wonderful timing and misdirection.

I like to watch and study his Smoking Thumb trick. Not because I will ever do it because I don't smoke, but to appreciate more on how terrific his handling was. The subtleties is great and the more I watch it the more I shake my head in appreciation of his technique. It is just sure genius.

Also, it would be nice to have a journal of the greatest magician to perform at FISM.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Mar 31, 2015 10:14PM)
A book on Kaps can either be one of two ways. One like Tommy Wonders where tricks are combined with notes from Kaps on theory like in the Wonder books. Or the best option would be the one Karr and Levent did on Roy Benson. A bio of is life interspersed with describing his act describing his mindset through out. I think we would learn a lot if we knew what he was thinking as he designed it. Not to copy the tricks, but to learn the real secrets and essence of the great man. We all know how to do tricks, but learn the inner thoughts of a master is the best lesson.
Message: Posted by: RS1963 (Apr 24, 2015 05:20PM)
Exactly Michael and long time no see This is Randy I worked with you at the C.C. shop. Very good response also Michael.

Anyway wanting a F.K. book for most of us isn't so we can do what he did it is to learn more about his thinking and how he aproached the things that he did etc... Yes most of what Fred did is out there we all know that. Magic isn't just knowing how the effects work.
Message: Posted by: Jerry (Apr 25, 2015 11:46PM)
A DVD on Fred Kaps performace only came out a while back and I have watch that more then anyother instructional DVD.
I don't want to copy his act, I can't, or will I ever have the ability.
I would like to have AT LEAST a bio/history book and/or video.
And as Michael already explained, most magicians like to study other magicians they admire.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Apr 27, 2015 02:13AM)
Hey, Randy, it's nice to see you on here. Miss those days at the Circus. Good times.

I wrote a bio for Wikipedia a few years ago with of course much editing. I would like to use this as a blueprint for the book. I have already written out the moves for the Homing Card trick. But, I can't begin to really know this guy without contacting those that knew him well. Pete Biro would be much help if I decide to do this book myself. However, the guy that has collected a lot of info on Kaps is Dik Koornwinder.

I am having trouble contacting Koornwinder. I am not sure if is still collecting information for a book on Kaps or if he is even interesting in working together on the project. Since we are both a half a world away, it will make it difficult to meet in person.
Message: Posted by: Julie (May 2, 2015 12:14PM)
There's a Fred Kaps book on the Big Auction right now...

Message: Posted by: RS1963 (May 12, 2015 04:44AM)
[quote]On May 2, 2015, Julie wrote:
There's a Fred Kaps book on the Big Auction right now...

Julie [/quote]

That is probably the one that came out in the late 80's early 90's nice little book it isn't a major work on F.K's magic and life as is needed however. So far that book has not been written.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (May 21, 2015 02:41PM)
Just to clarify. Kaps' notebook was written in English.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Jun 2, 2015 03:26AM)
Pete, I contacted Kaps' daughter about collaborating, but she doesn't sound interested. I still would like to work on it, but projects like this take time. I want it to be comprehensive and full of detail. Who knows, sometimes fate lends a hand on things like this.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jun 8, 2015 02:36PM)
Caveney apparently owns the rights and Dick Koornwinder is working on it... albeit very slowly.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Jun 8, 2015 09:06PM)
Yeah, Dick is taking his time and I offered to help him in anyway and ignores me.

I think I'll wait for Caveney's book because it will get done and it will be a good book.
Message: Posted by: RS1963 (Jun 9, 2015 12:56AM)
That is good to know that Koornwinder's project isn't dead. Hopefully it will come to be sometime in the not all that distant future.
Message: Posted by: mtpascoe (Jun 9, 2015 02:29AM)
The only reason I made my offer to Dick Koornwinder was to help get the project finished. But, I believe Mike Caveney will do a great job and finish this in a timely manner. I can't wait, it should be great book.
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Jul 1, 2015 04:23AM)
My opinion is that Dick Koornwinder isn't doing much. I have emailed him several times about obtaining some of his tricks, which he does not permit anyone else to make or sell. I got no response on everything. I am very surprised of a person who has created some the best magic in the world, will not even respond to the community that supported him.

He also has to be very old by now, and may not be physically able to do any work on a book or anything else.

Is he even still alive, no one has mentioned him in so long that makes one wonder.

What has it been 10 or 15 years since Tenyo put out the Koornwinder Kar, the rights had to have been given by someone.

There has not been any kind of book on Dick Koornwinder himself and his creations.

It will be sad that by the time a book, if any, would get published, and they say, "Fred Kaps - who is he?".
Message: Posted by: MJE (Dec 2, 2015 11:20AM)
There is a FredKap.com site, but I think it's been dormant for several years. I believe it is owned by Koornwinder. Obviously, it is being paid for. It is mentioned on the site that Caveney "hopes to write a book" about Kaps.
Message: Posted by: Riley (Feb 4, 2019 03:01PM)
Any news/updates?
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Feb 4, 2019 07:00PM)
For general interest, I'll throw in this anecdote, which the late Jay Marshall told me, many years ago.

Fred Kaps hac been booked to appear at a private function of a Dutch group in Chicago. Jay was an invited guest. Arriving at the last minute, as was his custom, Jay found a seat in the auditorium. As Fred Kaps was about to begin.

Jay said that Kaps, speaking in the language of his hosts, did a hilarious monologue. Then, he presented several big prop tricks (actually. several small illusions) followed by his classic act with all the well known material.

Jay told me that he concluded that Kaps was, in all respects, the WORLD'S GREATEST LIVING MAGICIAN.

I had seen that, except for an Ed Sullivan show appearance, Fred Kaps perform only once, his manipulative act, Jay had cast the "deciding vote"!
Message: Posted by: Jerry (Feb 5, 2019 09:48PM)
I predict that Fred Kaps will slip into oblivion along with Syldini; Martin Nash; Tommy Wonder and Doug Henning.

The only ones that survive are certain card magicians like Larry Jennings, Marlo and so forth.
Message: Posted by: Greg Kiefer (Jul 28, 2019 02:52PM)
Any updates on the book project?
Message: Posted by: Axman (Jul 23, 2020 07:27AM)
[quote]On Jul 28, 2019, Greg Kiefer wrote:
Any updates on the book project? [/quote]