I had a suspicion that Mr. Gurney's play, first seen in New York in 1989 and trotted out regularly since then at regional and amateur theaters the world over, might by now feel as dated as the means by which its characters trade their thoughts. I also thought I detected a little cynicism in bringing what is essentially a staged reading to Broadway, sprucing it up with big names, and charging roughly $140 for a top-price ticket. But before long, my qualms began to erode under the sweet, sad spell of Mr. Gurney's deceptively simple and quietly moving play. As performed by a sterling Mr. Dennehy, playing the rock-solid, letter-loving Andrew Makepeace Ladd III, and an utterly extraordinary Ms. Farrow, as the flighty, unstable and writing-averse Melissa Gardner, Mr. Gurney's intimate drama gains steadily in power, as life keeps ripping away at the seams of its characters' well-tailored existences. The play's means may be economical, but it etches a deep portrait of life's painful vicissitudes.