Born in Rainbach im Innkreis in 1936, Zauner created the four-volume novel cycle “The End of Eternity” from 1992 to 1996. Most recently, since 2004, he has devoted himself entirely to the “Rainbacher Gospel Plays”.
Crime novels, chronicles, plays
Zauner grew up with his single mother after his father died in World War II. He studied in Vienna and Rome, but did not become a teacher and devoted himself to writing at his parents’ home in Rainbach im Innkreis. In 1981 he published the Sauwald thriller “Up there in the forest with these people”. From 1992 to 1996 followed the meticulously researched chronicle of his home region at the beginning of the 20th century up to the invasion of the German Wehrmacht in the volumes “In the shadow of the molehill”, “And the fish are mute”, “Fruits from the pigeon tree” and “Heiser wie Jackdaws”. But Zauner was also a playwright and wrote plays that were often performed and translated, as well as radio plays.
State Culture Prize and Theater Festival
His wife Roswitha also wrote, she was a poet and author of children’s books. Together they had four children. In 1985 the Zauner couple were awarded the State Culture Prize for Literature. In 2004, the couple founded their own theater festival, the Rainbacher Evangelienspiele, which included drama, music and dance. It is based on 17 plays that Zauner had written over the years based on Bible material that had made a lasting impression on him as a child. In 2009, a separate theater barn was built for the performances, which were very popular. Roswitha died in 2021. In June 2023, the play “Ruth” is on the program, a story about being a stranger and the stranger, but also an unexpected, tender love story, as the family announced.