Say hello to Chen Drachman, a tiny energetic girl from Holon, whom in the last two years has been living and creating in New York City, and waiting for the big breakthrough in her acting career * Her pride: The web show “Hit the MARC” which she created herself.


Many talented people have and will continue to try to make it in the big city. With a bit of luck, to stir in with their talent and charisma in the steamy pot that is the industry, trying to bring their acting/singing/dancing/multi talent careers to the top. Frank Sinatra promised and delivered, and did it his way, Barbara Streisand asked you to not rain on her parade in “Funny Girl” and Chen Drachman cherishes any small success along the way: “I don’t believe in doing it for the sake of fame alone. At the end of the day what matters is what’s on your resume. That’s your business card. I know I’m going to make it, I’m seeing small successes along the way already and I really rather take the time needed and do things the way I believe in”.

Drachman (25),  Holon born, has been living and creating in New York City for the past 2 years. She graduated from the Film and TV department in Eylon high school, she got there after transferring from the gifted student program and after getting the acting bug.  “I talked to my mom and I realized that films convey a lot of power. The ability to tell a story seemed magical to me; to create a piece of art which would then act as a vehicle for the message. I fell in love with it when I was in 6th grade”.

Drachman graduated with honors from the Film and TV department and joined the Israeli military, serving in the Intelligence Services for 2.5 years. She tells us that the decision to give up on service in the military theatre, was quite easy for her: “I know art was something I was going to do for the rest of my life, and I wanted to do something different with my service. I’m very patriotic, I’m %100 Israeli, I love and cherish both the country and the military”.

She already had her dreadlocks during her service, in case you were wondering. She got them when she was 17. She claims it was her only teen rebellion, and even that, it happened with her parents’ approval: “I loved dreadlocks ever since I was young, but the whole ‘You’ll have to be bald the day you decide to get rid of them’ thing was kind of intimidating. It took me years to process until I finally got them. My parents were ok with it because I’m a super nerd, [and you can write it down just like that]. I think they felt that if this was my rebellion, might as well let me have it”.

When Drachman finished her service she decided to go learn acting in the United States and was debating whether to do that in New York City or Los Angeles. When the wheels touched the ground at the JFK airport, the dilemma was over. “NYC was love at first sight” she says, “When I was done doing the touristy things, I could direct my attention towards the lifestyle in the city. Many people are afraid of how big the city is, and that everyone is rushing to get somewhere, that it’s very exhausting. They say it makes them feel tiny, and *I* think, it makes you feel like a part of something bigger; since I’m a person who’s always on the move and who is very focused. I find the dirt of the city to be magical: the city is so urban, there’s something about it that is quite cliché, which makes it sort of legendary. The feeling of walking down the streets, is very strong. It reminds me of Tel Aviv which I also love very much. In NYC the melting pot of tons of colors, scents, flavors, cultures, it’s a very liberal city and I felt that this city worships everything that is culturally important to me like cinema, theatre, music, and when you get to the city, it’s a kind of a default to be surrounded by all of this, and it’s wonderful.

Hit the MARC

And so Drachman went to school at AMDA (The American Musical and Dramatic Academy), after she graduated, she didn’t rest and between running from an audition, to filming, she developed by herself, the web series “Hit the MARC”, which shows moments from the life of students in a school for the performing arts. Drachman writes the script, produces, directs, and also plays one of the characters, CJ, while 6 of her best friends from AMDA, portray the rest of the characters: “It’s my baby”, she smiles and adds “when I was done with school I asked myself ‘now what?’ If I had an unlimited budget what would I want to do?’, that, of course, is not the case, since I have no budget what so ever, but one of the answers to this questions was that I’d be happy to go back into writing and acting for camera, and that’s how the show was created”.

Q: So now seriously, what about the budget?

A: “I don’t really have one. I borrowed the camera from a friend, I spent money out of my own pocket to buy a microphone because the sound quality was bad and we had to, we bring props from home and for now, the entire cast is not being paid. We recently launched a campaign on Kickstarter which is a website that helps different artistic projects get some funding. We can accept donations until May 7th, and if we don’t reach our $1000 goal by then, we won’t get a thing”.

Q: Wouldn’t you prefer putting your time into paid projects?

A: “Well in addition to the series, I audition for films and TV, and the past year I’ve done 2 student films and 2 other short films, I just shot a commercial and I have a part in a feature these days. I’m supposed to film few more scenes this week. In addition, I have a permanent job in my school’s dormitory. I’m not gonna give up on this project. I know that it’s a long journey but I’m not in a rush. I’d rather be more selective about the things I choose to do, but know I’m doing them in the best way that I can”.

Q: Where did you get the inspiration to take such a leap and create a project with no budget?

A: “I was just reading Tine Fey’s biography, who’s a great role model by the way. One of things she’s done was to create ’30 Rock’. She was thinking about the concept for a very long time until someone suggested she’d write about her experience as the head writer on ‘Saturday Night Live’. She was looking for an answer that was just under her nose the entire time.

Other than that, a dear teacher told us in a lecture at school, that ‘If you don’t find a job, create one. Don’t wait for it to come. It’s not enough to be talented and wait for things to happen, you gotta *make* it happen’, and then it was clear this is what I’m going to do”.

The series “Hit the MARC” can be found on YouTube and other popular websites: “Blip”, “Funny or Die”, “Comedy Central”. The first season is 8 episodes long, 9 minutes each. These episodes show the entire cast and in between them, there are 3 minutes long “minisodes” that focus on specific characters. The themes are being passed on with humor and wit, and the show describes dilemmas from the life of young people who are part of the showbiz.

Q: What about some time for fun?

A: “I mostly go to the cinema and coffee shops with friends. I’m not the party type. More of the homebody type”.

Q: You live in the city of celebrations and parties! It’s a waste of the city!

A: “It’s true. But I always say the city has something to offer to everyone. My best friends really like to drink, I’m the nerd and I’m totally fine with that. I was never intrigued by smoking or drinking, on the other hand, I really wanted to experience how it would be to sky dive. So I went on and did it”.

Q: Is there time to do anything other than work?

A: “I work at the dorms afternoon to midnight, and I find the time to work out. I work out at home and take long walks in the city. I also write a lot, mostly scripts and songs that some of them were sang in live concerts recently. Sometimes it’s hard to make yourself write with a deadline, but that’s what makes the difference between a hobby and a profession. For me, it’s a profession”.

Q: What do you miss the most in Israel, except for family and friends?

A: “in a very superficial way – Yotvata cold chocolate milk, I was obsessed with it for years. I miss Hebrew even though I have a lot of it, but I’m not submerged in it. It’s different. I miss hearing Hebrew on the street. It reminds me that I’m somewhere else. And I miss the views. We’re a family who used to take trips quite a lot, because I have family in Nahariya, in the Krayot, in lots of places, and my service was in the desert, and I really love the desert view”.


Revital Parker.

(special thanks to Claire Latimier for helping editing the English version)