Uchicago

Events at Rockefeller and Bond Chapels

You'll find below information about scheduling University-affiliated weddings, memorials, other University events, student events, and external events. Please review this information and then, if you wish to inquire about Rockefeller or Bond Chapel availability for an event, contact us.

For general event requests, including student needs, in scheduling events at Rockefeller or Bond, please contact Mike Boyman.

For weddings, please review the weddings page, and write weddings@uchicago.edu. For departmental memorials, public tours or inquiries about the architecture, and alumni site visits, contact Matthew Dean, director, University Chapels. For student and community spiritual events, contact Jigna Shah, director of spiritual life. For choral activities, contact James Kallembach, director of Chapel music. For the organ, contact Thomas Weisflog, University organist.

See also the notes below about photography.

Weddings

Please review in detail the information on our weddings page.

Memorials

With the growing scale of the University constituency, we are typically only able to take memorial ceremonies brought to us by (sponsored and organized by) departments, rather than immediate family funerals. Such memorials for alumni, staff and faculty are typically organized at least one month and often one quarter in advance to facilitate planning and attendance at a time the campus can convene. Please contact the closest affiliated department of the family member to ascertain if a sponsored memorial can be scheduled.

Memorials are normally held during the main academic year (October through May), and are most often scheduled at Bond Chapel on Thursday or Friday late afternoons or Saturday mornings, or at Rockefeller Chapel on Thursdays or Friday afternoons or Saturdays earlier in the day. The sponsoring department can reach Matthew Dean for intake. 

Customary memorial reservations are three hours (one hour for setup, 70-95 minutes for the ceremony, the remainder for reset) and charged at the standard departmental rate (see below) after the completion of the memorial. The services of our organist, coordinator, sound system operator, and custodian are included. The sponsoring department is responsible for organizing the program content, printing the booklet, and publicizing the event.

Associate dean Shaundra Cunningham may be reached directly if desired as a presider or speaker, or if the memorial or funeral request is urgent in nature.

Since food is not easily accommodated at either Chapel, receptions should be organized by separate reservation at nearby buildings where applicable - often Ida Noyes Hall or the Quadrangle Club for Rockefeller Chapel memorials, and Swift Hall for memorials at Bond Chapel.

Divisional or Departmental Events

All activities at Rockefeller and Bond Chapels must meet University affiliation standards. Priority in booking is given to divisional and departmental activities: academic ceremonies, lectures, faculty/staff memorials, faculty-produced or center-produced concerts or arts activities, staff recognition events, and University-produced alumni events.

The standard departmental charge for the University Chapels (Rockefeller or Bond) is $330 per hour. (For events booked prior to 6/30/22, the prior rate of $300 per hour applies). This covers staff time in active event management and planning, building overhead including custodial, instrument tunings, basic public address audio, and perimeter security (CBORD ID swipe access is activated for departmental event representatives at the time of an event). Our chapel administrator will invoice or initiate a transfer, after the event, using the University account number that you provide.

Additional fees will apply for more complex audio needs, VIP security, livestreaming support, or if both the organist and carillonist are required (as for end-of-year ceremonies and memorials).

Meeting rooms at Rockefeller Chapel and Spiritual Life (at Ida Noyes) may be booked only by faculty, staff, or students associated with Rockefeller or Spiritual Life programming; at Rockefeller, calendar availability is limited by events involving the full building. The prayer and meditation rooms at Rockefeller and Spiritual Life may be used by individual students whose ID has been activated for CBORD access. 

Student Events

We welcome inquiries from student groups and individual students (currently enrolled in degree-granting programs at the University of Chicago) about events that might be suited to Rockefeller or Bond Chapel. Please be in touch with Mike Boyman to discuss ideas.  

Please plan requests at least one quarter in advance. We are only rarely able to accept same-quarter requests from individuals and ensembles.

The standard student fee for booking either chapel is $330 for reasonably brief events without advance rehearsal needs, payable after the event by transfer from a student organization account or check to Rockefeller Chapel. You may charge and keep admission fees if applicable. For events longer than three hours or with complex technical or logistical components (as determined on a case-by-case basis by Rockefeller staff), the standard departmental rate of $330 per hour will apply. Support can be sought from Student Government, UChicago Arts Grants, or other sources with advance planning, and such requests are welcome to refer to this page.

University of Chicago student photography or mobile filming (for projects, involving hand-held cameras only) is usually allowable during normal business hours by arrangement with Matthew Dean.

We cannot accommodate photography and filming requests from students of other institutions, or from other unaffiliated parties. Professional photography of costumed persons, as for weddings and promotions, or any posed or commercial photography, is strictly reserved for University-affiliated parties with paid event reservations. See our Visit Us page for further details. Drones are not permitted under any circumstances, interior or exterior, on University property.

External Events

Rockefeller and Bond Chapels are not available for rental by organizations or individuals outside the University of Chicago, including other colleges and universities. Third-party (external) organizations must be in active residencies on campus and/or presented by a faculty or staff member, department, or center to appear.

We regret that we are unable to accommodate unaffiliated weddings and family-organized memorials or funerals (memorials are coordinated by University departments).

Rockefeller Chapel maintains major existing civic partnerships where artistic or ceremonial events are presented in collaboration with the University. These partnerships currently include the Chicago Architecture Center, Chicago Humanities Festival, the Hyde Park Jazz Festival, the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, the Hyde Park-Kenwood Interfaith Council, the Chicago Police Department, and Empty Bottle Presents. These partnerships are reviewed periodically in conjunction with Civic Engagement.

National musical organizations with which Rockefeller Chapel is affiliated (the American Choral Directors Association, the American Guild of Organists, the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America) and local professional arts organizations may approach James Kallembach (for choral or vocal events), Thomas Weisflog (for organ), or Alex Johnson (for carillon). Generally, opportunities for outside groups are via inclusion on existing Chapel-produced recital series, or collaborations with other University departments. 

National and international professional ensembles and performers are presented on campus by the University of Chicago Presents. See also the University of Chicago Folk Festival and the Major Activities Board.