Arts & Entertainment
1 min

Drag kings in the Seven Kingdoms

Toronto’s Yes-Men drag king troupe is bringing Game of Thrones to an Ottawa stage

Toronto’s Yes-Men troupe. Credit: Tania Anderson

In the northern reaches of the Seven Kingdoms, well beyond the ken of Melisandre, who holds sway in Storm’s End, a mummers’ farce is about to take place. Beyond the Wall, in the lesser-known hamlet of The Gladstone Theatre, a drag-king troupe named The Yes-Men will perform a parody called Game of Kings.

Those familiar with the HBO series Game of Thrones, or the novels on which it is based, will revel in such references, and everyone else needs to get on the bandwagon post-haste.

The recently formed Yes-Men comprise Flare, Brian Bedside Manor, Spencer Munny, Maximum Capacity and Titus Androgynous (better known to Ottawa audiences as the Ottawa-born actor Virginia West). They came together in part because they all wanted to do shows that involve more than just lip-synching. “We like to do really theatrical, narrative-based pieces,” Androgynous says.

The troupe also has a mutual passion for the fantasy series Game of Thrones. “I was watching it, and there was someone who I thought, ‘Oh, Flare, you could totally play this character!’ We discovered that almost everyone in the group was a huge fan,” Androgynous says.

The show will begin with the song “Seven Nation Army,” by The White Stripes, an almost magically fitting reference to the Seven Kingdoms. There will be pantomime, some of which will mirror the story closely, while “others are wishful thinking, where we sort of imagine how a relationship between two characters could be different,” Androgynous says.

Flare hints at some of the performances: “There will be a Theon Greyjoy and Ramsay number, one with the Night’s Watch, an Arya number and a Joffrey number.” The icing on the cake will be guest Belle Jumelles playing the Mother of Dragons, with Nerd Girl Burlesque as the dragons, and a special number from Ottawa’s own Capital Kings.