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Customs, knowledge, craft techniques | Life in Stanzertal # 2023

The intangible world cultural heritage of the Alpine region


The Stanzertal valley in the western part of Tyrol is famous above all for the ski resort of St. Anton, from which the Arlberg was developed for tourism. "Heritage Ausria" takes a look behind the scenes of tourism and meets people who talk about the tough conditions they grew up in. The fair distribution of alpine meadows and water, which ensure the survival of farmers in the valley, were and are of central importance in the region. A festive highlight every year is the cattle drive, where, as in the village of Pettneu, the shepherds are thanked for their care of the animals on the mountain pastures.

For hundreds of years, the alpine pastures have been managed by the two-thirds court. The communities appoint a ruler who then takes care of the distribution of the animals and the shepherds. The herdsman Alfons Falch talks about the beauty and challenges of his job. Shepherd Gerhard Egender explains why life on the mountain pasture has captivated him from an early age. Several older people from Pettneu also have their say, all of whom had to go up to the Nessleralm as children, either to supply the shepherds with food or to work as shepherd boys on the mountain pasture.

Railroad construction and tourism were essential for the economic survival of the region. Most people in the Stanzertal work for the railroad or at least seasonally in ski schools or hotels or rent out rooms themselves, and they can still remember the simplicity of accommodation for guests in earlier days. Historical footage shows that even around 100 years ago, most farms were run as a sideline, and even then, farmers earned an extra income as station masters or mountain guides.

The schnapps distiller Stefan Notdurfter is also visited. His orchards, which he lovingly cultivates, are irrigated with water from the Waale, an ancient irrigation system that is still very important today for the fair distribution of water in the valley.


Customs, knowledge and old craft techniques

In the 15 documentaries, the intangible cultural heritage is presented as an integral part of the Austrian cultural landscape. The films search for traces of the past in order to make the creation and changes of intangible cultural heritage visible. They document the current situation, whereby the character that creates identity for the present is highlighted. And they address the question of what importance the care of heritage has for the future of the Austrian cultural landscape.

“Heimat Österreich” takes you to the most beautiful cultural landscapes in Austria. Elaborately designed documentaries portray long-held traditions and customs, explore popular pilgrimage sites and show how culture and nature intertwine in the heart of Europe.

Co-production | Clever Contents GmbH and ORF III

Partnership | The Austrian Commission for UNESCO

Genre | documentary

Director | Martin Vogg

Production Manager I Saskia Netousek

Length | 45 minutes

Year of production | 2019 - 2020

First broadcast | Fall 2019

Saskia Netousek
+43 699 100 56 296

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IKE Stanzertal Der Hirte Peter Erath nach dem Almabtrieb mit seinen jüngsten Kindern

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