It probably would’ve been enough of a draw just to call it by name: Thursday Night in the Monday Club Bar. But the folks at Upstairs on the Square in Cambridge have a few more crowd-attracting tricks up their sleeves for their monthly dinner dances.

It probably would’ve been enough of a draw just to call it by name: Thursday Night in the Monday Club Bar. But the folks at Upstairs on the Square in Cambridge have a few more crowd-attracting tricks up their sleeves for their monthly dinner dances.

There’s the room itself: pink and green walls, with a zebra pattern carpet, an undulating pink bar, lighting by Ingo Maurer, and the centerpiece: a bright, lacquered lavender piano.

But more important, there’s the band: the Bo and Bill Winiker Orchestra, the seven-piece group headed up by longtime Boston legends, and Brookline residents, the Winiker brothers — Bo on trumpet and vocals, Bill on drums.

“I’m living my dream,” says Bo. “At age 10 I became a member of the Winiker Family Band, with Bill on drums, my dad on piano and my mom on bass, and I’ve been a professional musician ever since. I’ve been able to do something that I love as well as entertain people. We love to take people on a little journey with us.”

The journey into the Harvard Square restaurant began when Bo was at a business meeting lunch there about a year and a half ago.

“I remember saying to myself, ‘This is such a fun place, I would like to perform here,’ ” recalls Bo.

Bill remembers Bo telling him that he spoke with co-owner Mary-Catherine Deibel about the possibility of bringing in the band, and that she said, “You should. Let’s try a dinner dance.”

Deibel, who co-owns Upstairs with Deborah Hughes, thinks back and says, “We’d always heard of the Winikers, and one day Bo came in and was chatting with Deborah and myself and said they were looking for a place to kind of reinstitute a tradition that they had done at the Parker House for many years — the dinner dance concept. We thought that would be great.”

All three recall that the first night they tried it out, soon after that discussion, the place was packed, and has been ever since on the fourth Thursday of each month.

“They move the tables out of the way, we play, and people dance,” says Bo. “The place is like going down the rabbit hole in ‘Alice in Wonderland. The colors are great, the atmosphere is great, the vibes are just phenomenal. For me, it’s like being in Manhattan.”

Bill brings up their Parker House gig, where they held sway for 14 years.

“That was different from this one,” he says. “At the Parker House we played swing music. At this dance we play every kind of American dance music, from swing to Latin to foxtrot. And by the end of the evening, we end up playing rock ’n’ roll and very contemporary music from the radio.”

Bo follows up on that.

“It’s a dinner dance, but it’s also something different. I always listen to Ryan Seacrest doing Top-40 radio, so in addition to the Gershwin and Cole Porter and Sinatra and Nat King Cole and Great American Songbook, we’re sprinkling in some 2008 tunes as well. We’re taking people on a trip through a panorama of American popular music from the ’30s and ’40s on up.

“I love all kinds of music,” he adds. “So we do some Michael Buble, some Harry Connick, and even some hip-hop. We’re not doing the violent stuff or anything that has words that are inappropriate, just the fun stuff. We’re even doing some Justin Timberlake with four-part harmony. We’re in Cambridge, it’s an eclectic audience, and the music matches the eclecticism. We’re definitely keeping the old stuff alive. But we can go from the old to the new with great authenticity.”

Bill mentions that he loves the Cambridge crowd as much as the music.

“It’s so mixed,” he says, almost incredulously. “We get an older crowd — people in their 70s and 80s — and we get the crowd that’s our age — in their 40s and 50s – and we get some of the young Harvard students. It’s a real melting pot. It’s really a fun scene.”

Deibel is thrilled that the one-night experiment has turned into such a popular night at the restaurant, that it’s become what she likes to call a “classic dinner dance.

“We clean out the tables in front of the bar, but there are still lots of people sitting around the perimeter, having dinner,” she says. “Then the band comes in and sets up in front of the fireplace, and they play from 9 till 11.

“It’s turned out to be one of our best events,” she adds. “They have a huge following, and it’s always busy.”

The Winikers are certainly no strangers to Cambridge, as it’s been something of a stomping ground for them over the years. They used to play tea dances at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, had a dozen shows at the Regattabar, and still regularly perform at Harvard Faculty Club dinner dances.

But the brothers rarely get to play together. Because there are so many bookings for the wedding and corporate crowds, they each head up their own band. When it comes to their Upstairs on the Square gigs or their ongoing Sunday brunches at Skipjack’s in Boston, both brothers usually share the stage.

But, they’re asked, when that happens, who’s the leader — big brother Bill or little brother Bo? The answers are slightly different.

“It’s sort of a co-op kind of thing,” says Bo. “I might turn to Bill during the set and say, ‘What do you think we should do next?’ And he’ll say something, but I might overrule him, then he might say, ‘Well, what do you want to do next? Bill lets me make the calls a lot of the time. But it’s a team effort.”

“We do kind of co-lead,” says Bill. “He’ll come over to me and say, ‘What do you think we should play next?’ And I’ll give him an idea. And he usually listens.”

Thursday night dinner dances with the Bo and Bill Winiker Orchestra are at Upstairs on the Square, 91 Winthrop St., Cambridge, on the fourth Thursday of every month, starting at 9 p.m. The next dance is on Aug. 28. For dinner reservations and additional information, call 617-864-1933.

Ed Symkus can be reached at