In 1967, the PEI Symphony Orchestra was established to present high quality, live orchestral music to audiences in Prince Edward Island, to provide practical training for young PEI students to learn and perform orchestral music, and to provide gifted Island musicians an opportunity to perform with a large orchestra.
Today, under the baton of Maestro Mark Shapiro, the PEISO brings together approximately sixty musicians in a four-concert season that enthrals audiences with programming that includes both cherished favourites and adventurous new compositions. Top pop artists from the region such as Tara MacLean and David Myles are often featured, and audiences of both young and old fill the Confederation Centre’s Mainstage Theatre to capacity.
Additionally, the orchestra’s activities have grown to include year-round programs such as the Music Alive partnership with the National Arts Centre which brings cross-cultural music workshops to Island schools. The “PEISO Presents” recital series regularly brings live chamber music performances to communities outside of Charlottetown and into continuing care residences. Especially popular are the recently instated “Tuning in to Nature” events, which provide a unique musical trail walk experience to patrons.