JR Taylor JR Taylor


Joe Scruggs – Not Afraid of the Dark

Credit: Production Assistant, Recording, Mixing


Not Afraid of the Dark is the story of nighttime in the life of a young boy. He chases fireflies in the park, gets ready for bed, and finds out about all the wonderful magic that happens in the dark. Through this little boy’s dreams and with the help of special lighting effects, we dance with the stars, catch shadows, and visit the land of stick people. We discover the dark is never scary, but fun and can be seen in a whole new light. Come on, let’s discover what wonderful things can happen when you “turn out the lights”!


Joe Scruggs on creating the concept for Not Afraid of the Dark: “In my other show I have a routine called Stick Man, which uses Live Wires. Live Wires glow in the dark and they bend (sort of like flexible neon). Stick Man gets rave reviews from audience members of all ages and it is a stunning visual effect. I realized it is possible to have children enjoy turning out the lights and seeing the magic of glow in the dark effects as long as it is presented in a creative, fun and totally non-scary way. That was the beginning for Not Afraid of the Dark.”

1999 Joe Scruggs, noticing fear of the dark in many young children, creates several new songs “in the dark.”

October 1999 Joe and Ballet Austin Associate Artistic Director Michelle Martin talk about a joint production with Ballet Austin.

1999–2000 Michelle and Joe develop characters and ideas for the show.

2000–2001 David Gaddy develops sketches for the costume and scenic designs, which help Michelle and Joe expand the production.

July 2001 David finalizes costume and scenic designs. Communilux builds the set in Dallas.

August 2001 Stephen Mills develops the choreography. Alexey Korygin builds costumes in Ballet Austin costume shop.

September 2001 Tony Tucci finalizes his lighting design in theatre.

September 7, 2001 Premiere of Not Afraid of the Dark, Paramount Theatre, Austin, Texas.