Years in the making, the Jacksonville rock opera explores a unique era of local history


From FSCJ to France to New York City and now to the rooftop of MOSH, La Caroline hopes to shed light on the history that has eluded Northeast Florida for 450 years.

La Caroline: Jacksonville’s Rock Opera is a complicated and layered production about the convergence of the French, Spanish and Native Timucua people 450 years ago during the founding of the French colony Fort Caroline — now known as the Fort Caroline National Memorial — on the banks of the St. Johns River in Jacksonville.

More than five years in the making, La Caroline is scheduled to present its first full performance this week at the Museum of Science and History on the Southbank.

The play is set in New York City, as well as 16th-century Old and New Worlds, and follows the lives of French Huguenot explorer René de Laudonnière, artist Jacques Le Moyne and Timucua Chief Saturiwa, among a cast of many more intriguing characters. It blends contemporary music and dance with a look at the complicated situations that arose between the Timucua people and those Europeans who were essentially in charge.

It’s part history lesson, part entertainment.

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