After 1915 we find him acting in Warsaw's "Venus"
Theatre with Shtrasfogel, already not under his proper
name, but under the stage name "Dranov."
Jonas Turkow remarks about
"Dranov, who had copied and
imitated the great Yiddish actor Natan Dranov, even took
his name for a pseudonym."
Sigmund Turkow writes that
during the First World War, when the Germans had
occupied Warsaw, all the Yiddish "illusionists" (movie
theatres), there would appear troupes from several
professional and so-called "wartime actors." In the
cinema on Jelne 1, a troupe began to play under the
direction of the actor Bennie Abelson and L. Shtrasfogel.
"Their fellow players came
from a series of 'war actors, with the 'imitation
Dranov,' at the top. The 'imitation Dranov' was a lesser
one, brighter, healthy young man with a head of dark
hair and burning eyes. He spoke with a tight bass, with
which he was even more successful in immersing in, so
that he would be similar to the "truth" of Dranov's
The "true" N. Dranov,
a splendid dramatic actor, during the First World War,
had stormed into Warsaw with his "intrigues" and
"dramatic resonance." The "imitation" had indeed led to
the choosing his name for his pseudonym.
The older actors were very bothered when a snooty person
was allowed to profit from one of their colleagues
hard-earned "labels.". From then on they would
tolerate him only because of his acting abilities.
Grishe Rotsein maintains
that D. did not make it easy to use the name of the
"Great Dranov," but it turned out that it was wise. He
is -- according to Rotstein's opinion -- he was a greedy
Chasid, an admirer of the deceased actor Nathan Dranov,
and decided to forge his name by keeping it on the
D. virtually did not use to
play in any legitimate troupes, but in small itinerant
troupes across the small Jewish neighborhoods of Poland.
Later he also had participated in the "Grodner troupe"
According to his membership
card, which one can find in the archives of "Lukhmi
Hagitut," one can see his effective name, and that he
was taken in as a member of the Professional Yiddish
Actors' Union in Warsaw on 21 April 1920.
During the Second World War,
he had wandered across the areas that the Soviets had
occupied, and in 1940 had co-acted with the Movable
Yiddish War Theatre [Baveglekhn yidishn
melukha-teater] for the western areas.
According to the actor
Zalmen Koleshnikov, K. on the first Seder night in 1940,
was forced to perform, and the next morning he received
the news that an actor, who was not feeling well, wanted
to see him. Koleshnikoff immediately went away from this
noticeable place, and there it happened that D. wept and
screamed , "I am blind." It had come out, that he truly
and suddenly became blind. We soon called a doctor, and
we had taken him to the Grodno hospital. There after a
short time he became entirely paralyzed. Actors who used
to travel to Grodno to play, or even only to travel
through the city, It was time to visit him. The last
news, that he was assured that his condition was
According to the actor
Sheftel Zak, the Nazis captured him in the hospital,
when they took Grodno, and they killed him.
M. E. from
Grishe Rotstein, Zalmen Koleshnikov; Sh.E. from Sheftel