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I discovered the first references to Anna Pritzi in Toni Bernhart´s habilitation "Volksschauspiele". He quotes from a travelogue from 1838 by the writer and theatre director August Lewald. Here Lewald describes attending a performance of a play by Anna Pritzi with an all-female cast and a subsequent encounter with her. He tells she was a shoemaker's widow and reports on 21 plays she is said to have written. Not only Lewald wrote about Pritzi and her theatre in his Tyrolean travelogue, but other literary figures such as the authors Karl Immermann or Franz Ignaz Castelli also make references to her in their.

Karl Immermann has a special theory about the all-female cast of Pritzi´s theatre. He suspects that the young women were encouraged to do theatre after they had finished fieldwork, as there were many soldiers in Innsbruck at the time. Playing theatre meant that the young women were more concerned with rehearsing the texts and less with meeting the soldiers.

In the meantime, I have found out that Anna Pritzi was not a widow during the time she was active in theatre. Her husband was a shoemaker, but was still alive while Pritzi was writing and directing. So why the designation as a widow?

The Viennese Castelli, during his stay in Tyrol, attends a staging of a play in Hötting near Innsbruck that Pritzi is said to have written, entitled "Sohn der Wildniß, oder der Christensclave" (Son of the Wilderness, or the Christian Slave) and even quotes some verses. However, he only reports on Pritzi in 1856, whereas his colleagues Lewald and Immermann already did so in the 1830s.





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