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Transgender Renaissance Man: Seth Nayes

By on April 6, 2012

Seth Nayes is a veritable alternative renaissance man: actor; model; dancer; anti-bullying spokesperson. Seth got his start in the entertainment industry as a professional wrestler (Sometimes as Syrin, sometimes as Gigi Gaymore) — an unusual and particularly hazardous route for someone who’s openly transgender. In this interview we discuss his former wrestling career, bullying, and his current status as Madame Envy in the Peach Pie Caburlesque troupe.

[dcs_img width=”214″ height=”300″ thumb=”true” framed=”black” author=”Photo: Mark Anderson” desc=”Seth Nayes” lightbox=”true” title=”Georgia Lyon” pos=”right” mleft=”15″][/dcs_img]

JNC: You got your start in professional wrestling. That’s a very homophobic environment. Did you receive extra punishment because of that?

SN: I was around for a few years on the production staff before I started training so I made a lot of friends and learned the business a bit before I just jumped in the ring. My mentor Val Malone and her husband the uber-talented Silas Young helped me out a lot. Sam Hayne, who is a legend within the Indy Wrestling scene, gave so much advice and was very accepting. Of course there were those who didn’t quite accept me and gave me a hard time (they secretly wanted it in the pooper). There would be the occasional stiff kick to the throat from people who tried to actually hurt me, but you have to get up, shake their hand and say “thank you sir, may I have another?”

JNC: That leads well into my next questions… you’re involved with a project called “Ouch, Bullying Hurts!” Tell us a bit about that.

SN: It is a beautiful video put together by Arketype Inc. It’s shown in schools to raise awareness of not only bullying, but ways to stop it. A lot of kids are afraid of speaking up. Growing up can be tough, there are too many kids offing themselves because of the rough treatment they get at school. If I can help someone get through high school, into the real world, and past that stage of helplessness it’s been a job well done.

JNC: Outside of the wrestling ring have you experienced a lot of bullying because of your sexual preference and lifestyle?

SN: I grew up mostly on an Indian Reservation in Lac Du Flambeau. So when I was younger, I was jumped and tormented daily—not only for being a ginger, but for wearing fishnets and socks on my hands. I [took] karate and after years of training I could defend myself and they started leaving me alone. I decided after those 5 years of torture and bullying that no one would ever make me feel that way again.

JNC: Now that you’ve discovered the world of burlesque via the Peach Pies Caburlesque troupe, you’re Madame Envy. What’s your goal on stage?

SN: Oh my, after being a part of the Best of Midwest Burlesque Festival, I am so inspired to go above and beyond what I was doing before—the flash, the buildup, the excitement. When seeing a legend such as Ophelia Flame literally light up a stage it inspires you to reach for the stars. I have many goals within burlesque. But my main goal would of course be the first transgendered Queen of Burlesque—this is only the beginning.

[dcs_img width=”199″ height=”300″ thumb=”true” framed=”black” author=”Photo by Stefan Westman” desc=”Madame Envy and Moxie Rhodes of Peach Pies Caburlesque performing "Girl With One Eye"” lightbox=”true” title=”Madame Envy and Moxie Rhodes of Peach Pies Caburlesque performing "Girl With One Eye"” pos=”right” mleft=”15″][/dcs_img]

JNC: What’s the atmosphere like in the Peach Pies?

SN: Sassy, ridiculous, cheeky, scandalous, outrageous. You never know what to expect. These women are seriously the craziest broads in Wisconsin. I love them all to peaches; I mean pieces [laughs].
Moxie Rhodes and Kitty LaRue have taken me under their brilliant feathered wings and it’s been the best time of my life. We’ve only been getting better and better. If you get the chance, come see us shake and shimmy for yourself. The ridiculousness can only be truly experienced if you’re close enough to catch a garter.

JNC: [laughs] I’ll take it under advisement. Do you have any upcoming creative projects you’d like to share with us?

SN: Well there is talks of starting a web series based off of my first horror film “Spawn of the Zombies” which is now an ode’ to Left 4 Dead. I’ll be brought back in a living role. But don’t worry I’m sure I’ll be eating brains again in no time! I also have a huge shoot coming up at Ohio State Reformatory, a huge haunted abandoned prison where I will be shooting with one of my favorite photographers, Dividing Me. Stay tuned! But most importantly, Peach Pies Caburlesque will be coming at ya in the flesh! ‘Oh! And I was just featured in a publication, Gorgeous Freaks Magazine. This is the year of the dragon baby, and this dragon is blowin’ more than just fire!

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J. Nathan Couch

About J. Nathan Couch

J. Nathan Couch is an author and paranormal investigator. He is part of the Wisconsin-based Paranormal Investigation and Research Society, and guides ghost walks and bus tours in support of Washington County Paranormal. His new book Goatman: Flesh or Folklore? is available now.


  1. Jilla Gorilla

    April 13, 2012 at 12:42 pm

    Seth is a fucking rockstar!! Gorgeous and sassy and tons of talent. Thanks for interviewing him!

  2. Kristal Manthe

    April 13, 2012 at 7:45 am

    Ive know Seth since before he became Syrin, before Gigi…. when he was still a lowly camera boy, dancing his cute little butt off from behind the camera, up high on his scafalding stage. Doing his hair and makeup was always the best because he was always so appreciative. I remember the ups and downs, the times I worried about how the wrestlers would treat him, but he never gave up. The day he told me he finally got a break to become a model, I was so proud of him. Seth is so accepting and willing to give you the ripped up chained shirt off his back ;0) I love and miss you doll! We need more people like you in this world. You should bring your ass to Texas sometimes, we all miss you so much!!

  3. Kat Hazard

    April 8, 2012 at 9:48 am

    Seth amazes me! Such will power and strength to proudly show how he’s most comfortable!

  4. Milwaukee Alt.

    April 7, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    I LOVE SETH! :)

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