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SYFY WIRE Fraggle Rock

Fraggle Rock voice actor, Dusty’s Treehouse creator Stu Rosen dies at 80

By Benjamin Bullard
Fraggle Rock title screen

Stuart M. Rosen, a prolific voice actor and creator who helped develop the iconic children’s puppet program Dusty’s Treehouse in the late 1960s and voiced The Storyteller in HBO's Fraggle Rock, reportedly has passed away from cancer. He was 80 years old. 

Rosen enjoyed a creative career that spanned decades, frequently turning up as a voice actor in animated shows that spanned both comic book characters and TV commercials. His long list of appearances are highlighted by Dusty’s Treehouse (as the title character), Fraggle Rock (as The Storyteller), and the critically-acclaimed The Legend of Prince Valiant (in a variety of voice roles) from 1991.

Rosen was part of the original creative team that broke new ground in bring puppets to the small screen with Dusty’s Treehouse, stepping into the role of co-executive producer for the series after developing and starring in a prototype of the show at the independent educational TV channel KCET in the mid-1960s. 

Dusty’s Treehouse went on to enjoy a brief national syndication run after getting picked up by what was then KNXT, a Los Angeles CBS affiliate. The show earned eight Emmy Awards, as well as a Peabody Award in 1973, and eventually found a second life as part of Nickelodeon’s children’s programming. 

Rosen also worked behind the scenes on a lengthy list of beloved animated shows, including voice casting the original 1980s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series, as well as similar off-camera credits for Batman: The Animated Series, X-Men, Spiderman: The Animated Series, and Superman: The Animated Series. He also directed the French animated series Phantom 2040, a 1990s production that earned industry praise for Rosen’s commitment to elevating animated fare by recruiting serious dramatic actors for its voice roles.