Park Square Theatre presents


Nov 19 – 22, 2020
Streaming Feb 1-28, 2021

Written and performed by Antonio Duke
Directed by Ellen Fenster

This show’s run has concluded.

Join the poetic journey of a man traveling through time, witnessing our country’s shared history and the ongoing violence against Black people. Both personal and expansive, Tears of Moons interweaves African spiritual figures and mythology with Greek epic theatre to reckon with the past and share a vision of strength.

TEARS OF MOONS was filmed on Park Square’s Boss Stage and originally aired on Zoom Nov 19-22, 2020. 

“Well trained and highly charismatic, Duke uses his craft to give this piece light and pathos. —Star Tribune, 2018.

A young black man sits in a bus stop. He has an African mask and backpack with him.

Antonio Duke. Photo by Aaron Fenster.

“As a black playwright, I conjure stories specifically for black folk so we can have a forum to communally bear witness to the rage we usually hide. But I want everyone to see it so that the suffering people go through can be remembered and honored through ritual. The human condition is the human condition. Empathy is empathy. The victims of racial violence I speak on are human and their stories speak to our shared humanity.”  — Antonio Duke, playwright

“2020 has been a year or recognizing and reckoning, and this play is a witness not only to our history, but how we might grapple with this moment. It is a witness to the truth and the challenge we have before us.”  — Ellen Fenster, director

Antonio Duke (playwright, performer) is a Twin Cities based actor and playwright. In his work he focuses on mythology. Within mythos lies intimate and epic circumstances that he’s driven to explore. He conjures most of his muse form black spiritualities; specifically those deities from the Yoruba, Santeria and Vodou traditions. His artistic mission is to provide conjuration spells for black folk. By offering black magic he hopes to illuminate a communal healing space. He is an alumnus of the University of Minnesota/Guthrie B.F.A Actor Training Program. He has been seen on stages with The Blue Barn Theatre, Penumbra Theatre, Pillsbury House + Theatre, Climb Theatre, Nebraska Shakespeare Festival and the Guthrie Theatre. His first solo performance piece Tears of Moons was accepted into the Guthrie Theatre’s Solo Emerging Artist Celebration. His second solo performance piece Ashes of Moons premiered at Pillsbury House Theatre’s as a part of their Naked Stages Fellowship. He received both the Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board and Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship for his next solo piece Missing Mississippi Moons. He is the Co-Artistic Director of The Black Ensemble Players. You can expect him to cultivate many more stages as his journey continues to grow.

Ellen Fenster (director) is a professional theater director and arts educator in Minneapolis and part of Park Square Theatre’s artistic leadership team. Ellen has directed at Pillsbury House Theatre, The Illusion Theater, Yellow Tree Theater, Theatre Mu, Artistry, Gremlin Theatre, U of MN/Guthrie Theater Actor Training Program and Park Square Theater. She is an associate artist at Pillsbury House Theatre where she ran the Chicago Avenue Project from 2008 to 2016.  She is also an artistic associate at Illusion Theatre where she helps connect the theater with young and emerging artists. She is currently the Artistic and Executive Director of Twin Cities Theater Camp, a summer theater intensive for children.

Tomas Leal/Leal Studios, (Videographer and Editor) is a commercial photographer with an expertise in portraiture and event photography. He is a founding artist of In Progress having started with the Fresh Voices program in 1996. Tomas now leads In Progress’s Family Portrait sessions, photographing hundreds of families each year. In addition to his commercial & portraiture photography, Leal works in music video production and is an established teaching artist & mentor. www.leal-studios.com

Erin Gustafson, Stage Manager, Zoom Technician
Emmet Kowler, Projection Designer
Karin Olson, Lighting Designer
Charlotte Deranek, Sound Engineer

Tears of Moons bears witness to dark areas of history and includes descriptions of murder, violence and suicide. The protagonist, a storyteller struggling with his own role of retelling history, uses graphic language. To reflect on and begin processing this difficult material, audiences are encouraged to view the post-show conversation by Duke, Fenster, and moderator Rie Gilsdorf of Embody Equity.

Recommended Grade Level: 9–12

Suggested Areas of Study and Discussion: American History, Current Events, Police Violence, African Religion and Spirituality, New Work, One-Man Show

The Story: This powerful and poetic solo show bears witness to the pervasiveness of violence against Black people in our collective history. Both personal and expansive, Tears of Moons interweaves African spiritual figures and mythology with Greek epic theatre to reckon with the past and share a vision of strength.

Performance Length: 1 hour.

Cost: Tears of Moons will be available for students and educators at no charge.

Registration:  This show’s run has concluded.


To ensure the health and safety of Park Square patrons and staff, the ticket office is temporarily closed for in-person and phone service.

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Thanks, and stay well!


The box office is currently closed. Please email tickets@parksquaretheatre.org with any questions.

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