Our Narrative


Orchestra Long Island, established in 2017, carries forward the musical legacy of the Long Island Philharmonic. Former Philharmonic Music Director, David Stewart Wiley, was profoundly motivated by the belief that Long Island communities deserve to have a professional orchestra, and led a group of dedicated musicians and passionate educators to form Orchestra Long Island (OLI). A leader in music performance and education on Long Island for nearly two decades, Maestro Wiley possesses the passion and experience that are key to the organization's success.

The Orchestra attracts musicians from Long Island and the New York Metropolitan area, many of whom perform on Broadway, in chamber ensembles, and are also members of such groups as the American Ballet Theatre Orchestra, New York City Ballet, New York Pops, and Orchestra of Saint Luke’s. The musicians also participate in regional, national and international music festivals. In addition to celebrated careers as performing artists, many OLI members are on the faculties of prestigious area music schools and maintain established private studios. They recognize the vital importance of the arts and pursue their passion for music on the stage and in the classroom.

The Orchestra presents an eclectic range of music from all eras, including beloved classics as well as contemporary compositions, in diverse settings: summer music in the parks, performances at professional concert venues, and small-ensemble performances at schools and community venues. In the summer of 2020, as a result of the global Coronavirus pandemic, Orchestra Long Island kept playing as the organization shifted to a virtual concert series. In the not-so-distant future, OLI aspires to develop a chamber music series which will include Baroque music played on period instruments.

In all of these ventures, OLI promises music at the highest level of artistic excellence, performed by professional musicians, with a wide array of guest artists. Education remains essential in accomplishing OLI’s mission for aspiring musicians and for audience members. The Arts-in-Education program includes Performance Partner Residencies, in-school small ensemble performances, and coaching workshops by members of the orchestra. Future plans include a young artist competition and master classes.

Equally important to OLI’s education mission is nurturing the audience. Maestro Wiley will present lively and informative pre-concert lectures with guest soloists and composers of new works when included in the program. OLI’s varied programs demonstrate the vitality and relevance of the music and its influence on other musical genres, such as rock, jazz, and Broadway. Now more than ever, we recognize the importance of and envision creating online resources as a way to provide educators and audiences alike with access to the richness and variety of classical music

To achieve these goals, Maestro Wiley and OLI pledge to work with Long Island communities to build its audience, serving those who already know and love Classical music and those who will encounter it for the very first time. Through dynamic leadership, bold, enterprising programming, and flexible instrumentation, Orchestra Long Island’s goals and mission will leave an indelible cultural mark, engaging and strengthening existing Classical music audiences while cultivating future musicians and music appreciators.

We invite Long Island’s musicians and music lovers—of all ages!— to join with OLI in bringing a timeless and transformative experience to our communities. Rest assured of our firm commitment and deep passion to be your Orchestra, Long Island.