June 16th, 2022 by Karen Burg

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How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Midge Maisel [Rachel Brosnahan], in her between-gigs job as emcee of a burlesque show, contemplates her choices...those she’s made and those that are limited by 1960’s society. Photo by Christopher Saunders © 2021 Courtesy of Amazon Studios

Set Decorator Ellen Christiansen SDSA

Production Designer Bill Groom

Prime Video

The world of the marvelous Mrs. Maisel, “Midge”  [Rachel Brosnahan] keeps revolving, coming back and going forward, throughout the new Season 4, as Midge tries to find her footing after a disastrous firing at the end of the last. She does move back into the Upper Westside apartment she had to give up after the divorce, but ends up inviting her parents to move in, which was a financial as well as loving move! She becomes the emcee of a burlesque theater and...well...there’s so much more, including her friend Lenny Bruce  giving her some no-nonsense perspective after his sold-out performance at Carnegie Hall!
Set Decorator Ellen Christiansen SDSA and Production Designer Bill Groom have a delightful conversation with Andrew Baseman SDSA [Bill was Andy’s mentor a few years ago!] about all of the behind-the-scenes for this Season, including the legendary “Big Bertha” chandelier from the Warner Bros. collection. 
You will so want to watch this video!

Here is a glimpse of moments from Season 4, which Ellen & Bill deliciously discuss in the video above.
Karen Burg

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Wolford Theater, NYC 1960...Midge onstage...on stage! The burlesque theater set was a total build. Bill and Ellen tell us the tale of the renaissance of Big Bertha! [See video above] Rachel Brosnahan, center stage. Image courtesy of Prime Video © 2021

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Wolford Theater, NYC 1960...Midge tells it like it is, or at least, as she sees it. Considering the times, she had a lot to say that is still reflected today. Rachel Brosnahan, in front of classic theatrical curtains from Ellen’s team. Image courtesy of Prime Video © 2021

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Wolford Theater, NYC 1960...During her run as emcee of the burlesque theater, Midge pushed for upgrades and improved operations, which ended up making the Wolford more profitable. Bill and Ellen’s sets were amazing, even more so backstage than here! Ellen provided so many interesting set elements that were incorporated into the script...or are to come...the clawfoot bathtub you see here, a camel from Newell Props, a dancer’s cage from Eclectic Encore, and so much more! Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021

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Wolford Theater, NYC 1960...Lenny Bruce [Luke Kirby] watches his friend Midge [Rachel Brosnahan] from backstage, just before the police raid the place and he and she make a circuitous escape! Photo by Christopher Saunders © 2021 Courtesy of Amazon Studios.

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Carnegie Hall, 1960...Lenny Bruce has just finished his sold-out performance, still incredulous that so many showed during a heavy snowstorm, and he gives his friend a stern talking-to about her attitude and perspective. Because of Covid and no performances allowed at the time, the TMMM team was able to shoot at the actual Carnegie Hall! Rachel Brosnahan, Luke Kirby. Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021

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The Plaza Hotel, NYC 1960...Midge [Rachel Brosnahan] attends a wedding. Again, because of the pandemic, they were able to use the corridors and ballroom of The Plaza! Ellen reveals, like many of the upscale places they have dressed, there were elements that the location wanted to keep. High compliments. See video for details! Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021

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Meanwhile, Midge’s home life has come full circle...sort of! She is back in her original apartment, which her ex-father-in-law owns, and invites her parents over for dinner. Rachel Brosnahan. Photo by Christopher Saunders © 2021 Courtesy of Amazon Studios

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Midge’s apartment...Her parents are stunned when she offers to have them move in with her, instead of their temporary quarters at their friend’s suburban home where they feel out of place. This is their world as well as Midge’s, sophisticated, Upper West Side. Marin Hinkle, Tony Shalhoub Photo by K.C. Bailey © 2021 Courtesy of Amazon Studios

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Midge’s apartment...Well, that didn’t take long! Her parents have quickly settled in! The apartment had to be rebuilt from the first season, and they decided that she would have changed some things, since she’s expanded her world. So, there’s a new dining room – check it out on the video! Marin Hinkle, Tony Shalhoub. Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021

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The apartment...Father and daughter toast. They both are committed to following their dreams. And this is home, a good place to hold as a small haven...sometimes, very small! Tony Shalhoub, Rachel Brosnahan. Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021

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Village Voice offices...While Midge is trying to build a career as a comedian, Abe [Tony Shalhoub] has stepped down from his professorship and is now writing for the Village Voice, and loving it! Note: It’s 1960, the year of the Kennedy election. Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021

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Village Voice offices...This is a great illustration of the changes made during the season to show a realistic working office, especially like this, where things would change daily in actual life. Ellen points out that they were lucky to have photos of the early VV offices, so they could really be accurate in their depiction. We at SET DECOR are very aware of the aftermath of deadlines! So, we’ll leave you with this true-to-life image. Tony Shalhoub as Abe, with head on desk, mid-edit. Courtesy of Prime Video ©2021