Founded in 2005 by viol virtuoso Josh Lee, Ostraka has been described as "an utter intellectual and aural delight." Joined by skilled lutenists John Lenti and David Walker, the trio explores the oft-ignored repertoire of the renaissance and baroque, bringing a dynamic virtuosity to their performances.
Performing on instruments usually relegated to supporting roles (bass viol, theorbos, lutes and period guitars), the three met while drinking whisky and playing old time music on a night off during the Bloomington Early Music Festival. The trio of southerners immediately sensed a common musical vocabulary that has only intensified as they moved from the jam session and into explorations of early music.
Seven years later, each of Ostraka's members has gone on to become some of early music's most sought after soloists and chamber musicians, performing with leading ensembles and musicians across the globe. The trio continues to work together wowing audiences across the US playing "even the most exasperatingly difficult music with total elegance and care."
Cited for his "stylish and soulful playing," Josh Lee performs on viols and double bass with some of the world's leaders in period music. Founder of Ostraka, Josh is a member of Musica Pacifica, Les Deélices, and The Two, and has performed with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Boston Early Music Festival, Orchester Wiener Akademie, Carmel Bach Festival and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. His performances have been heard on Performance Today, Harmonia, and Österreichischen Rundfunk, and he has recorded for Dorian, Koch International, Magnatune, Bear Machine Records, and Reference Recordings.
Praised as "a master of the score's wandering and acrobatic itinerary" by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Josh teaches at workshops across the US, and has been a guest instructor at San Francisco Conservatory, University of California, Berkeley, and Peabody Conservatory. Josh is looking forward to a wildly varied concert season, including appearances with The Four Nations, Portland Baroque Orchestra, and a European tour with indie band Radical Face.
John Lenti has appeared as a soloist and chamber musician on lute and theorbo across the United States and abroad, and his performances have been broadcast on "Performance Today" and "Harmonia." His playing has been described as "a joy to behold" (Seattle Times) and praised for its "nuanced beauty and character" (Gramophone) and "uncommonly big sound" (Third Coast Digest). His recording credits include Division with Ostraka, And I remain… with soprano Linda Tsatsanis, and The Amorous Lyre with La Monica, plus forthcoming releases with Seattle Baroque and Portland Baroque Orchestra.
John has also played with Seattle Opera, American Bach Soloists, Seraphic Fire, and Pittsburgh Opera (with Chatham Baroque) and is a founding member of the award-winning renaissance quartet Plaine & Easie. He studied lute with Nigel North, Jacob Heringman, and Elizabeth Kenny and holds degrees from the North Carolina School of the Arts and Indiana University.
Lutenist and guitarist David Walker has performed extensively throughout the United States earning praise for his "surety of technique and expressive elegance," as well as his "tremendous dexterity and careful control." David has appeared in concerts with such groups as Chatham Baroque, Early Music New York, the Newberry Consort, Tempesta di Mare, the Wolf Trap Opera Company, and Glimmerglass Opera. David has appeared on National Public Radio's Harmonia, as well as live and prerecorded broadcasts for numerous NPR affiliates.
An avid educator, David has served on the faculty at the University of Louisville and Bellarmine University, where he directed classical guitar studies. David holds degrees from Indiana University and the University of Louisville, and has studied lute and guitar with Patrick O'Brien and Nigel North.