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Hannes Schneider

1890 - 1955

The actor and ski pioneer Hannes Schneider was already as a Juvenile an enthusiastic skier and he already took part in a first ski racing event in Switzerland in 1907. In the same year he accepted a job as a skiing instructor in St. Anton am Arlberg.

During World War I he served in the mountain guide company where he was a ski instructor for the soldiers.

He founded the first ski school in Austria in 1920 and he implented the systematic training where the stem turn replaced the till then usual telemark technique. Two years later he founded the sports shop Schneider.

Hannes Schneider continued to campaign for the alpine skiing and he organised together with Arnold Lunn die first Arlberg-Kandahar-Race in St. Anton in 1928.
He wrote the book "Wunder des Schneeschuhs" which made him even popular in Japan and he was invited by the Japanese prince Chichibu. There he gave speeches about skiing.

Thank to his ability in skiing and to his popularity Hannes Schneider was also engaged for some movies from the beginning of the 20s. In these movies he was an actor impersonating outdoorsman and he could also demonstrate his ability in skiing.
He took part in the movies "Das Wunder des Schneeschuhs, 2. Teil: Eine Fuchsjagd auf Skiern durchs Engadin" (22), "Pömperly's Kampf mit dem Schneeschuh" (23), "Der Berg des Schicksals" (24), "Der heilige Berg" (26) and "Der Kampf ums Matterhorn" (28).

In the sound film era of the 30s followed few more movies like "Der weisse Rausch" (31) and "Die weisse Kunst" (34).

When the National Socialists took over the power in Austria Hannes Schneider was not afraid to criticized their methods and he defended his Jewish friends. This led to his imprisonment in March 1938. Friends of him intervened and one month later he was released again but was no longer allowed to work as a skiing instructor.

Hannes Schneider sold his shop and emigrated to the USA. There he continued his activity as a skiing instructor.
Moreover he was responsible for the development of the ski region at the Mount Cranmore.