Warner Theatre presents ‘The Batman’ live in concert

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews 'The Batman' live in concert at Warner Theatre (Part 1)

It brought moviegoers back to theaters as one of the Top 10 blockbusters last year.

This Saturday, Warner Theatre presents “The Batman” with a live orchestra at 8 p.m.

That’s right, it’s D.C. Comics in D.C. with Warner Brothers at Warner Theatre.

“A year ago when I watched it in theaters I was blown away by the score,” music director and conductor James Olmstead told WTOP. “I had never seen anything like that in a ‘Batman’ movie, so to think that I get the opportunity to conduct the score less than a year later is pretty exciting for me. … If you even put on your headphones and just listen to this score on Spotify or Apple Music, it really sounds like an epic score.”

A 50-piece orchestra will perform for roughly two hours and 45 minutes with one intermission.

“We have a giant screen above the stage and the orchestra is set up below the stage,” Olmstead said. “We pretty much perform the score in sync with the movie. … You really get a full symphonic experience the entire time you’re there. It’s almost like you’re there to watch a symphony and there happens to be a movie playing above, so if you love symphony and you love this score, it’s an opportunity that you can’t miss.”

Composer Michael Giacchino crafts an eerie atmosphere that differs from Danny Elfman’s theme for Tim Burton’s “Batman” (1989) or Hans Zimmer’s score for Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight” (2008).

“I’ve been a fan of Batman since the 1989 Danny Elfman score, but it’s funny though, as I’ve been conducting this show, [Giacchino] is the only score that runs through my head until we end the tour,” Olmstead said. “When there’s a solo, lonely feel, you might hear a little piano and celeste or a solo boy soprano will sing that brings a very eerie (feel) when we have The Riddler or a piece of poetry that he’s written for The Batman with the little clues.”

Audiences will be blown away by the powerful theme for Robert Pattinson, the bass likely shaking the theater.

“It’s a bit of a coming-of-age story for The Batman in this particular piece,” Olmstead said. “He uses a lot of the lower-end brass sections when The Batman is coming in — it’s the ‘bom, bom, bom, bom’ — that is going to happen whenever Robert Pattinson is about to do something with action. Lower horns for him, lower brass, we have a lot of bass clarinets, anything on the low end really brings in The Batman.”

Beyond “The Batman,” Giacchino is an Oscar-winning composer best known for Pixar animated films like “Ratatouille,” “Up” and “Inside Out,” as well as action franchises, such as “Star Trek,” “Jurassic World,” “Mission: Impossible” and “Planet of the Apes,” which previously teamed him with Matt Reeves, director of “The Batman.”

“What’s impressive is the breadth of the scores that he writes,” Olmstead said. “He writes across the board. The style that he has is really just high-quality movie music and he completely delivers every time. My personal introduction … was ‘Up.’ That was just a phenomenal score from start to finish.”

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews 'The Batman' live in concert at Warner Theatre (Part 2)

Listen to our full conversation here.

Jason Fraley

Hailed by The Washington Post for “his savantlike ability to name every Best Picture winner in history," Jason Fraley began at WTOP as Morning Drive Writer in 2008, film critic in 2011 and Entertainment Editor in 2014, providing daily arts coverage on-air and online.

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