Show Business: The Perils of Irene

She served enough coffee to keep Rip van Winkle awake and nervous till the end of time. Working Riker's, Cord's and other short-order, all-night stands in Manhattan, she was a competent waitress, but often she served people with her face turned aside. Once when a group of actors came in, she fled to the basement, hid and wept—for Irene Dailey really considered herself an actress.

Last week, Broadway actors in and out of employment were remembering Irene, whose scarred and overscarred acting career, after more than 30 futile years, had finally burst into flame in a foreign city. Giving a memorable...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!