Theater: Gabfest

I Was Dancing. Novelist Edwin O'Connor has always created characters with a tongue or two in their heads. In his first play, his hero is a retired vaudevillian, Waltzing Daniel Considine. Burgess Meredith acts, sings, and dances the part as if gazing nostalgically into the splintered mirror of a show-biz Narcissus grown old.

Through Waltzing Dan's room troop: his termagant sister (Pert Kelton), a scold who would rather be righteous than right; a mournful Jewish crony, much dismayed that a recently deceased and cremated friend might be occupying the ashtray at his elbow; a refreshingly downbeat priest to whom God is all...