February 21, 2016

For a certain slice of New Yorkers — you know who you are — Mark Rylance is the cultural deity that Beyoncé is to, well, a different slice of New Yorkers. At a recent performance of “Nice Fish,” a quirky charmer of a play written by Mr. Rylance and Louis Jenkins, the audience greeted every stuttered utterance of Mr. Rylance’s with delighted laughter and murmurs of pleasure, as if sampling the world’s most ravishing tasting menu. Fortunately, it took only a few minutes for the audience to simmer down and settle into the bewitching theatrical spell cast by “Nice Fish,” which opened on Sunday at St. Ann’s Warehouse. The production, which draws on Mr. Jenkins’s prose poems – some have been recited by Mr. Rylance when accepting his Tony awards — has been expertly directed by Claire van Kampen (also Mr. Rylance’s wife), and features wonderful performances not just from Mr. Rylance, probably the greatest Shakespearean actor of his generation, but from four other gifted actors.