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Jan 13, 2020

‘Actoria’ Brings Upbeat Cabaret Fun to Astoria at Beans & Lager

Did you know you can experience legendary Broadway shows right here in Astoria? Okay, the stage might be *slightly* smaller, but the energy (and talent) is just as palpable! We’re (…)

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Did you know you can experience legendary Broadway shows right here in Astoria? Okay, the stage might be *slightly* smaller, but the energy (and talent) is just as palpable!

We’re talking about “Actoria,” the Astoria Spotlight Cabaret show that takes place every other Wednesday at Beans & Lager on 36th Ave. The show is everything you want on a mid-week night in the city: warm, welcoming, fun and full of fantastic showtunes you can sing along with.

The show was started and is hosted by Josh Bardier, a local actor and performer. He said Astoria has long been nicknamed “Actoria” in the industry because of the large number of performers that moved to Astoria for the affordable rent prices in the past decade. They made it an official show in 2014 for one-night-only on Halloween, had a few other residencies in Astoria, and then found their forever home at Beans & Lager.

“The mission has always been the same,” Bardier said, since it started. “To create a safe space, to showcase the talent of our community, and to bring fresh and free entertainment to audiences while they enjoy a night out.”

It’s one of the only cabarets in NYC that has no cover charge, no food/drink minimum, and no cost to the performers whatsoever, so it’s a much more affordable choice than other similar shows in Manahttan.

“Astoria is my home. I couldn’t imagine doing this cabaret anywhere else,” Bardier continued. “As a host, you welcome people into the show by making them feel comfortable and at home. I am grateful that we had friends who helped us connect with Andy and Vivianna to make Beans & Lager part of the family.”

Andy and Vivianna own Beans & Lager, which opened in 2018. As its name suggests, it offers a full coffee house with Juan Valdez coffee, a 30-foot bar and over two dozen craft beers on tap and in bottles. Their food offerings are Mediterranean with a twist, offering anything from roasted golden beets with eggplant dip and toasted bread to Chicharron fried pork belly cubes sautéed in lemon chili.

Its own stage in one end of the dining room allows them to put a huge emphasis on performances. Along with Actoria, there are a local comedians every other Wednesday night, jazz every other Thursday, and other shows like dueling pianos and Samba Jazz and Bossa Nova.

Besides providing high-quality entertainment to the local community, “Actoria” also provides solace for local actors and a chance to reconnect with their inner passions.

“I created Actoria because there was a need in my community for actors to be able to perform outside of the audition room; to remember that the gift they each possess is priceless and must be shared. To do what they love to do and maybe touch someone along the way with their gift,” Bardier said.

And that has definitely rung true for the featured performers, which rotates each week (to participate email actoriacabaret@gmail.com).

“In a world where actors are constantly facing rejection, Actoria is that special place where you will always leave feeling encouraged and accepted,” local actor and businesswoman Amanda Jarufe said recently. “Come ‘crash and burn’ fantastically!”

Don’t miss the chance to see these amazing local performers THIS WEDNESDAY, January 15 at 7:30pm!

You can stay up to date on future shows at https://beansandlager.com/actoria (also: highly recommend making reservations on show dates) and by following them on Instagram here. “Actoria” takes place every other Wednesday from 7:30-10pm.

3301 36th Ave, Astoria

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