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Announcing Lakewood’s 2024 Music in the Chapel Series – Minneapolis, MN

Mar 17, 2024 | events/locations

Lakewood’s 2024 Music in the Chapel Series

We’re so excited for this outstanding lineup and we hope you’ll be able to join us for one (or several) of these concerts by amazing local artists and musicians.

J.E. Sunde

Minneapolis is known for its vibrant music scene, and one of the most unique places in the city to hear an eclectic range of local musicians may be Lakewood’s Music in the Chapel concert series. The popular concerts feature a variety of folk, classical, jazz and vocal groups and take place in the historic Byzantine mosaic chapel, completed in 1910 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  

Lakewood recently had the opportunity to interview three artists scheduled to perform in this year’s concert series. 

A space focused on listening

J.E. Sunde describes his music as a bit left of center and heavily influenced by Leonard Cohen, Paul Simon, Nina Simone and Elliot Smith. “I’ve borrowed from them liberally as I’ve crafted my own voice.”

Sunde’s solo career started in 2012 after studying music at UW-Eau Claire in the early 2000s. “At the university, I studied classical voice and played and wrote with a band that released two albums of weird folk music. And we did a whole lot of touring.” When the band called it quits at the end of 2012, the J.E. Sunde solo project, in the indie folk genre, was born.

Since 2014, Sunde has released four albums, including this past summer’s “Alice, Gloria and Jon.” Before joining the 2024 Music in the Chapel lineup, Sunde wasn’t aware of Lakewood beyond knowing it as a neighbor to the east of Bde Maka Ska, but he eagerly anticipates his upcoming June concert.

I love dynamics and subtlety in music and the ability to really hear the lyrics. When I’m in a space that is focused on listening, I feel so much more can be communicated and that leads to a deeper understanding with the audience. Chapel spaces,” he adds, “are meant for quiet and focus and often acoustic music. That makes them a really beautiful space for solo performances.” 

10th Wave

Gain a deeper appreciation of the music

Lakewood’s September musical guest, 10th Wave, is a collectively-run ensemble of conservatory-trained professional musicians performing Western classical music written in the last 50 years.  Weily Grina-Shay, Executive Director and clarinetist, explains that the group collaborates with living, local and/or underrepresented artists to connect with the Minneapolis-St. Paul community and perform high-quality programming.

The ensemble, composed of professional percussion, marimba, clarinet, violin, viola, cello, double bass, piano, flute, and voice musicians, has performed everywhere from concert halls to breweries. Grina-Shay is excited to add Lakewood’s Memorial Chapel to their list of venues. “The fusion of newly composed classical music with the backdrop of the historic chapel,” says Grina-Shay, “creates a unique environment where audiences can experience music of our time within a space constructed over a century ago.”

The chapel’s intimate setting will inform the ensemble’s repertoire and approach. With the smaller stage and closer audience proximity, the group plans to perform pieces with smaller instrumentation including “The Last of James Fenimore Cooper II” by Brent Michael Davis and “Billy Collins Suite” by Vivian Fung. Both pieces of chamber music with narration weave humorous storytelling and poetry throughout the music. “The subtly humorous tones of our program will bring a fresh experience, potentially challenging preconceived notions of a serious classical concert.” Grina-Shay’s focus on talking about each of the pieces leads to a deeper appreciation of the music. “We value the collaboration between art forms to create unique and compelling programs.”    

Amanda Grace

What the walls are saying

Amanda Grace, performing in October, describes her concert as drifting between folk, alt-pop/rock and Americana. Growing up as a pianist and vocalist allowed Grace to write some songs with an emphasis on melody and some ballads with more of a percussive drive. Her eighth album, “Give Me Away” was released just a few weeks ago. 

Grace performed at Lakewood’s Fall Colors Celebration in 2022 and looks forward to returning. “With settings like this, I’ve found more of a connection with the audience, and people are more keen on listening to what my overall message says in the songs, lyrics and melodic movements.” This connection is why Grace is so keen to play in this historic site.  “I plan to choose songs that are more personally meaningful to me. And the space will allow for a little more improv and collaboration from my musicians that day.”  

Considering the spirituality of Lakewood, Grace plans to be thoughtful regarding her song selection. “I look forward to meeting the audience and hearing their perspectives. I know with this special gathering comes a plethora of stories and opportunities to listen to what the walls are saying.”  


Lakewood’s 2024 Music in the Chapel Series

Concerts begin in April 7th and continue through December.

Discover the full lineup for and purchase tickets now for Sunday afternoon concerts.


Lakewood Cemetary

3600 Hennepin Avenue

Minneapolis, MN

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