ISBN 978-1-933237-12-1 (paperback), $8.95
The Gas Heart:
The Dada Anti-Masterpiece of Drama
by Tristan Tzara;
introduction, commentary, staging,
and a new translation by Eric v.d. Luft
The curse of youth from each generation is to believe that
they invented "cool." If you are 24 years or under right now,
you probably believe this.
But the truth is you invented nothing. You were invented.
Every band you love, every poem you write, every magazine
picture you dwell on, was shaped by your great-grandfather.
His name was Tristan Tzara.
Fortunately for you, Eric v.d. Luft (your distant uncle) has
remembered your great-grandfather's play, The Gas Heart. He
has translated the play gorgeously; all you have to do is read
it to understand where you come from, how you were invented.
- Robert A. Varisco
Author of several articles on Tristan Tzara
This translation is a vast improvement over Benedikt's, the only
other English version. It is a more accurate rendering of the
original French and reflects more authentically the true Dada
spirit. I suspect Tzara would have approved of this simple
edition which, like Dada, is without pretension. The binding is
sturdier and more handsome than most of the scripts that sell
for three times as much in shops on Broadway. The translator's
lively introduction alone is worth the price of the book. Tzara
cryptically defined Dada as a "state of mind" which "transforms
itself according to races and events" ... "a virgin microbe that
penetrates with the insistence of air into all the spaces that
reason has not been able to fill with words or conventions." He
countered inquiries regarding the explanation of Dada with, "You
explain to me why you exist. You haven't the faintest idea." Luft
sees Dada as essentially political and makes sense of this crazy
movement as no one else can. If he had lived 100 years earlier he
probably would have been a major Dadaist himself.
- Mary Wehrheim, historian
Any purchaser of ten copies of this book may perform
the play without paying royalties. Otherwise, please
contact the publisher about performance rights.