This year, Crooners Supper Club in Fridley is getting an earlier start on its big-tent pandemic concerts.

The newly christened Belvedere tent will open April 23-24 with Twin Cities powerhouse Jamecia Bennett and some new wrinkles.

In the new tent with a capacity of 150 (up from 130 last year), Crooners will feature "sturdy flooring, cafe chairs and plated food." Last year, Crooners offered a limited menu in a to-go format with concertgoers seated on plastic chairs.

Unlike last year's tent concerts, the Belvedere will not be located in Crooners' parking lot but rather adjacent to Moore Lake.

In 2020, Crooners staged more than 200 outdoor concerts between June 1 and Nov. 19 in its parking lot, patio and giant (eventually heated) tent.

The Belvedere's musical menu kicks off with Bennett, the vocalist of the Grammy-winning Sounds of Blackness. The powerhouse singer has been featured in many Twin Cities theater productions at Penumbra, Park Square, Mixed Blood, Ordway and Guthrie playhouses as well as Tyler Perry's touring productions.

Also scheduled: beloved 92-year-old cabaret queen Marilyn Maye (May 20-23), Joyann Parker's Patsy Cline tribute (April 30), the New Standards (May 1-2), Mick Sterling's Van Morrison tribute (May 13), Storyhill (May 14 and 16) and Dan Newton's tribute to Bob Wills (May 16).

Crooners is the second Twin Cities music venue this week to announce a series in a tent. The Hook & Ladder Theater is kicking off its Under the Canopy concerts May 1 with Minneapolis piano stalwart Cornbread Harris. That series is slated to run from May to early October.

Meanwhile, Crooners continues to present indoor concerts in its intimate Dunsmore Room and remodeled main stage with diminished capacities that follow state pandemic guidelines.

Twitter: @JonBream • 612-673-1719