The Rathskeller kicks off a new trend of live performances

Lead guitarist and vocalist Ross Downing, and guitarist Austin Bianco play with their band Halfway Home at Quaker Steak & Lube in the Rathskeller, Tuesday, March 11, 2014.

Endya Watson

The stage in Quaker Steak and Lube is the home of karaoke every Friday night, but now it will offer new entertainment.

Aaron Karns, general manager for Quaker Steak and Lube, said the restaurant will begin welcoming bands for live performances.  

Kevin Orosz, marketing coordinator for Quaker Steak and Lube, said he was pleased to bring live performances back to the venue.

“We used to do live performances here in the past but hadn’t for a while,” Orosz said. “We’re happy to start up again with a band like Halfway Home who really appeals to all ages and genres.”

Halfway Home, was the first to perform live Tuesday night. Orosz said he has known the members of the Halfway Home for a few years, and it was his decision to have the band be the one to bring back live shows.

“I was looking for something upbeat and current,” Orosz said. “Halfway Home has a good pop-punk sound, but they also bring rock.”

Band members Ross Downing, 19; Bryan Fackelman, 18; Adam Hradisky, 18; and Austin Bianco, 18, said their music reaches a wide range of musical tastes.

“We have a lot of metal and jazz influences,” Downing said. “Our influences range all over because we all come from different musical backgrounds, and that shows in our songs.”

The band performed an acoustic set at Quaker Steak and Lube. All four band members said that audience interaction is what makes live performances most enjoyable.

“I love putting lots of energy out and having the crowd reciprocate that energy — it’s a great feeling,” Bianco said.

After Tuesday night’s show, Karns said he is looking forward to continuing live performances in the future.

“Hopefully this will be the first of many live bands here,” Karns said. “Once people start to expect it, we can branch out and get a good variety of performers.”

Downing said he also hopes that Halfway Home’s performance will open doors for more shows down the line.

“Maybe this can turn into a regular thing; maybe we can start a trend, especially if we draw people, and everyone’s happy with the way the performance went,” Downing said.

Orosz and Karns said they encourage other bands that have interest in performing at Quaker Steak and Lube to reach out to them.

“Anyone who contacts us or expresses interest, we’ll definitely look in to,” Orosz said. “This show can be a stepping stone for some great talent to come in.”

For updates on live shows coming to Quaker Steak and Lube, visit its Facebook page at

Contact Endya Watson at [email protected].