Gotham City comes to life in the arena show “Batman Live,” opening Wednesday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The show, which will have eight performances from Wednesday through Sunday, features stunts, pyrotechnics, illusions and video screen sequences set in a three-dimensional Gotham City landscape.
Jack Walker, who plays Batman in the show, says suiting up as the Caped Crusader fulfills a childhood fantasy.
“I don't think there's any permutation of Batman that I missed,” Walker said in a telephone interview promoting “Batman Live.”
“Definitely my favorite comics as a kid, the Batman comics,” he said. “I loved the dramatics and darkness of the artwork. I loved the TV show as well, which I can only see now with hindsight how tongue in cheek it was. All the different movies, different manifestations of Batman, it's just great. I've followed it and been a fan, a genuine fan, from childhood.”
Walker, who is from London, has been portraying Batman across Europe. The show came to the United States in September, with dates in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, among others.
“It's great to be doing this, playing such an iconic character,” Walker said. “You really get to do the whole vicarious enjoyment thing, being out there. The way the show is, you really feel like you're in a movie or something, you're in a fantasy, and you're Batman. And everything is geared to make you pull that off. So it's a lot of fun.”
Before the fun came an arduous audition process, as Walker had to prove to the Warner Bros. powers that be that he had the right stuff to be Batman.