“‘Maisel’ does nothing small,” admits production mixer Mathew Price with a laugh as he reflects on his latest Emmy nomination for the Amazon series “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” He and re-recording mixer Ron Bochar celebrate the nomination this year — which they share with colleagues George A. Lara and Stewart Lerman — especially because of the challenges they faced while working during the pandemic. Even though there were new limitations, both mixers were amazed that the show continued to go big in terms of story, production, and the number of background performers rather than scale down. Watch our exclusive video interview.
Bochar and Price are nominated for sound mixing for the Season 4 finale, “How Do You Get to Carnegie Hall?.” Price shares that he thinks of this installment as “the best episode the show’s ever produced, dramatically.” He explains, “The drama and the emotion the show reaches is very real and earned.” Bochar concurs, saying that this one is “probably one of the best episodes of all the seasons at this point in time that allows us to get further and deeper into a lot of the characters.”
WATCH our exclusive video interview with Tony Shalhoub, ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ Season 4
In the episode, protagonist Midge Maisel (Rachel Brosnahan) worries about her ex-father-in-law Moishe (Kevin Pollak) who has suffered a heart attack, all while she reconnects with Lenny Bruce (Luke Kirby) and sleeps with him for the first time. The finale ends with stunning scenes shot at Carnegie Hall, where Lenny performs a historic set and then has a frank conversation with Midge about missteps in her own standup career. Bochar appreciates the balance in the episode between those huge sequences and the “quiet” moments. He describes it as a “very subtle episode on so many levels.”
The production filmed at the real Carnegie Hall, the first time the space had been used since the beginning of the pandemic. “It was really extraordinary being on that stage,” comments Price. He worked on recording all of the principal actors on stage and capturing the ambient sound of the 400 background performers sitting in the crowd, while Bochar had to “give the sense of space” by playing with the audio to convey different locations in the hall. “When we’re with Midge, she’s at the back of the theater, so how’s that going to sound?,” pondered the re-recording mixer.
The pair also reveal details about how the stunning final moments of the episode were captured. After Lenny’s set, Midge leaves Carnegie Hall during a blizzard, which the production recreated in August on their Brooklyn studio backlot. “They brought in tons of snow, they had big fans, they had trucks that were grinding snow and blowing it,” details Price. Since there was no dialogue in the scene to capture, much of the audio came from Bochar. He had to handle the challenge of conveying “the sense that the storm is big” with the “delicate” song that accompanied the emotional scene.
As for other moments in the fourth season that Bochar and Price love, they both point to the season premiere, some of which filmed at Coney Island. One long, memorable sequence unfolds as the whole ensemble talks while riding the Wonder Wheel, which they recorded in the studio. The biggest challenge of the scene for Bochar was trying to reflect “everything that’s going on in the scene and [Amy Sherman-Palladino’s] dialogue.” Price recalls filming at Coney Island, trying to get crystal clear audio of the actors while the rides were running. “For me the joy of working on the show is just working with the actors,” shares the production mixer with a smile.
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