Record numbers have already voted in The Guide Awards – now you can vote for Best Film too

Aysegul Epengin of the  Portsmouth Film Society presents The Guide Award 2017 for Best Film to the team behind Black Dog. Picture Credit: Keith Woodland
Aysegul Epengin of the Portsmouth Film Society presents The Guide Award 2017 for Best Film to the team behind Black Dog. Picture Credit: Keith Woodland
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We are proud to announce the return of the Best Film category to The Guide Awards.

As with the other categories, it aims to highlight local talent. Run in conjunction with Portsmouth Film Society, the nominations come from entries into its Short Cuts competition.

Matt Dixon, Best Visual Artist winner 2017 and Jo Bushnell of the Aspex Gallery. Picture Credit: Keith Woodland

Matt Dixon, Best Visual Artist winner 2017 and Jo Bushnell of the Aspex Gallery. Picture Credit: Keith Woodland

Best Film is category M, listed below. Click on the links where available to see the film.

Last week when we launched this year's awards we asked for your votes and you’ve responded in record numbers already.

But there is still plenty of time left to cast your vote for The Guide Awards, 2018, sponsored by Fry and Kent.

The awards aim to highlight the best in the local arts world from throughout the past year. We will be presenting the awards at a glittering bash on Monday, January 28 at The New Theatre Royal in the city centre.

The Music Department of the University of Portsmouth accept Best Classical Music trophy at The Guide Awards, 2017, presented by compere, Jack Edwards. Picture by: Keith Woodland

The Music Department of the University of Portsmouth accept Best Classical Music trophy at The Guide Awards, 2017, presented by compere, Jack Edwards. Picture by: Keith Woodland

As well as the 13 categories below, we will also be presenting a Special Achievement Award, sponsored by Portsmouth City Council. We will be letting you know how to get your tickets to this free event in the coming weeks.

You can vote online by clicking here.

The deadline is midnight on Sunday, December 30.



A. BEST COMEDY sponsored by Portsmouth Cultural Trust

1. Sunjai Arif: Took a well-reviewed show Stranger Things to the Edinburgh Fringe with Nathan Eagle

2. Hetty Austin: Part of the Boutique Comedy Club team along with Sunjai Arif and Joe Wells, and also building a good reputation on the gigging circuit

3. Dan Churchley: ‘Hampshire’s Houdini’, magician and behind the Solent Comedy nights

4. Mike Cox: Packs in the gigs nationwide, and also hosts the Funny People Comedy Club nights

5. Nathan Eagle: The other half of the Stranger Things popular Edinburgh Fringe pairing

6. Michael Frankland: South Coast Comedian of The Year finalist 2017 and MC at the Dolphin Comedy night

7. The Raymond and Mr Timpkins Revue: Scene veterans and one of the highlights of the new Big Mouth Comedy Festival

8. Matt Roseblade: MC’s the grassroots Fat Fox Comedy Club, and also behind the Puns and Roses nights at The Rose in June

9. Joe Wells: Took his I Hope I Die Before I Start Voting Conservative to Brighton Fringe, and is already previewing his 2019 show, Marilyn and Me

10 Readers’ Choice

B. BEST DJ sponsored by The Astoria Night Club

1. Wheats: Signed to Toolroom Records, he’s had extensive support for his music including from Calvin Harris with his release Kassia

2. Le Fish (Lee Fisher): One quarter of Monkey Love Stunt Team, he performed on Victorious’s main stage, and completed a marathon 50 -hour DJ set for mental health charities

3. DJ Banksy: Supported Goldie, LTJ Bukem and Shy FX, runs Banksy and Dunn’s Radio show, the largest drum and bass show in the region

4. Soul Divide: Hosted Mutiny, supported Solardo and Camelphat at their own Love Amplified raves, and also played Ministry of Sound London this year

5. Monty Ozanne: Performed at Mutiny, supported Camelphat, Solardo, Darkzy and is a Zeal Movement resident DJ, often playing around the city

6. Will Chump: Played at Victorious, and has guided the alternative club night, Delight, to 18 successful years

7. RJM: Supported Goldie, Roni Size, supported on Goat Shed (Southampton) and runs OHM Drum and Bass

8. DJ MB: This newcomer is only 18 and supported Goldie and Roni Size for Beats and Swing

9. Stanley Hood: Performed at Mutiny, supported Norman Jay, he’s a Zeal resident DJ and has played consistently in Portsmouth

10. Readers’ Choice

C. BEST BAND sponsored by The Wedgewood Rooms

1. Arcade Hearts: Demonstrated true DIY spirit as they released their debut EP and sold out The Wedge

2. The Collision: Completed a 14-date national autumn tour to plug new single Runaway

3. Dutch Criminal Record: Released the strong Waiting For The Weekend with a packed show at The Wedge

4. Fake Empire: The trio have been making an impression everywhere they play since forming just over a year ago

5. Melt Dunes: The psych-rock warriors undertook their first European tour and continued to make an impression on the UK scene

6. Omar Baba: The Asian hip-hop act bring some welcome diversity in more ways than one and a dose of humour to the scene

7. Seething Akira: The electro-metallers put out critically acclaimed debut album Sleepy Skeletor and toured widely

8. Shoot the Duke: Built on their reputation as a live act with their busiest festival season so far, and put out the single Cash

9. Torpedoes: The veteran goth-punks released the ambitious and well-received double album Black Museum and played a string of packed live shows

10. Readers’ Choice

D. BEST SOLO ACT sponsored by BH Live

1. Bella Estelle: New single Crazy in Love showcases her songwriting talents with support from BBC Introducing and Express FM

2. Matt English: The only solo act to make the final of this year’s Wedgewood Rooms Unsigned Showcase

3. Fugitive Orchestra: This captivating performer played his first US shows this year, and put out the Rules of the Riddle EP late last year

4. DevinJade: Gigged loads - scored a support with Luke ‘Nizlopi’ Concannon - and a local favourite

5. Jamin: Put out a brace of fine singles, Cruella De Ville and Heather Blues, showing off different sides of this singer-songwriter

6. Megan Linford: Hard at work in the studio on new material she has also co-launched the Future Folk acoustic and spoken word nights

7. El Morgan: As well as a solo act and with her own band The Divers, El is also part of several other projects and an active booster of the scene

8. Parv: The hip-hop act helped spread the word Squinny to the masses with his single of the same name, and has gained support from BBC Introducing and 1Xtra

9. Remedysounds: Headlined the Mayfield Stage at Victorious and proved his songwriting is as sharp as ever on new song The Round Earth Theory

10. Readers’ Choice

E. BEST FESTIVAL sponsored by Victorious Festival

1. Big Mouth Comedy Festival: The inaugural event at Portsmouth Guildhall drew the crowds with its mix of marquee names and local talent

2. Cheese Fest: Switching from a paid indoor event to a free weekend on Castle Field, Southsea, meant a bonanza for cheese-lovers

3. Dials Festival: A welcome return for the multi-venue event in Southsea focusing on the best in new music

4. Icebreaker: Staged more than 100 acts across a dozen stages in Southsea as it expanded to two days for the first time

5. Journeys Festival International: Celebrating the refugee and immigrant communities, this was its third year in the city

6. Kite Festival: Participants came from across the world to Southsea Common to take part in what is now one of the biggest events of its kind in the world

7. Oktoberfest: Moving down to Castle Field from the city centre for the first time didn’t deter those hankering for a drop of Bavarian fun

8. Portsmouth Festivities: Taking ‘freedom’ as its theme, there were dozens of events, concerts, talks, screenings and more in the annual arts bonanza

9. Wickham Festival: Steve Harley, Squeeze, Kate Rusby and Richard Thompson were among the stars of this year’s festival

10. Readers’ Choice

F. BEST PROFESSIONAL PRODUCTION sponsored by The New Theatre Royal

1. Cock at Chichester Festival Theatre: A gay man is torn when he falls for a woman

2. Mamma Mia at The Kings Theatre, Southsea: The unstoppable musical based on the music of Abba

3. Me and My Girl at CFT: A cheeky Cockney, played here by Matt Lucas is lifted to aristocracy

4. Sunset Boulevard at Mayflower Theatre, Southampton: Ria Jones, who originated the role of Norma Desmond, leads the way in this Hollywood noir

5. The Play That Goes Wrong at The Kings: The farce that opened the doors for the Mischief Theatre Company

6. The Sign of Four at New Theatre Royal, Portsmouth: A new adaptation of the Sherlock Holmes’ story

7. The Watsons at CFT: Things take an unexpected turn in this imagining of how Jane Austen’s unfinished novel could be completed

8. Titanic at Mayflower: Not an adaptation of the film of the fateful journey – this musical is a hit in its own right

9. War Horse at Mayflower: Michael Morpurgo’s First World War-set modern classic, featuring life-sized horse puppets

10. Readers’ Choice

G. BEST AMATEUR PRODUCTION sponsored by The Gaiety Bar

1. Constellations by Bench at The Spring Arts Theatre, Havant: Bees, cosmology and quantum mechanics in this tricky two-hander

2. Dracula by HumDrum at The Spring: Breathing new life into the Bram Stoker horror classic

3. Harvey by HumDrum at The Spring: A comedy about an invisible 6ft 3in rabbit and the nature of sanity

4 Hedda Gabler by Bench at The Spring: Tackling one of the all-time greats in Ibsen’s play

5. One Man, Two Guvnors by HumDrum at The Spring: Knockabout farce in the show that slayed the West End

6. Precious Little Talent, by Bench at The Spring: A privileged young woman is forced to face some home truths

7. Rabbit Hole by CCADS at The Square Tower, Old Portsmouth: The Pulitzer-prize winning drama about surviving loss.

8. The Tempest by SSA, Station Theatre, Hayling Island: Shakespeare’s final play is given a gender-twist

9. Waiting For Godot, by DeltaHead, at the Square Tower: A novel take on Beckett’s masterpiece that made good use of its venue

10. Readers’ Choice

H. BEST AMATEUR MUSICAL sponsored by The Kings Theatre

1. Carousel, by SDMS at Ferneham Hall, Fareham: The Rodgers & Hammerstein-penned show that spawned You’ll Never Walk Alone

2. Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang, by Portsmouth Players at The Kings Theatre, Southsea: An ambitious take on the musical based on the film of the lovable car in its 50th anniversary year

3. The Full Monty, by Portsmouth Players at The Kings: The show that asks its male leads if they’ll dare to bare

4. Grease, by Fareham Musical Society at Ferneham Hall: The evergreen story of love across the divide at a 1950s’ American high school

5. Hairspray at Titchfield Festival Theatre: Following Tracy Turnblad’s bid for fame against a backdrop of Civil Rights-era America

6. 9 to 5, by Portsmouth Grammar School at The Kings: The Dolly Parton vehicle becomes a story of female empowerment

7. Priscilla Queen of The Desert, by Portsmouth Players at The Kings: The musical that brought LGBT issues to The Outback

8. The Producers, by SDMS at Ferneham Hall: The Mel Brooks’ satire asking if the world is ready for Springtime For Hitler

9. Thoroughly Modern Millie, by SDMS at Ferneham Hall: The 1920s-set story of Millie who flees small-town Kansas for New York

10. Readers’ Choice


1. Vincent Adams as Lucky in Waiting for Godot by DeltaHead

2. Ben Counter as Elwood in Harvey and Renfield in Dracula by HumDrum

3. Nick Downes as Estragon, in Waiting For Godot by DeltaHead

4. Stuart Frank as Danny Zuko in Grease, by FMS

5. Darren Gilmore as Francis Henshall in One Man, Two Guvnors, by HumDrum

6. Jonathan Grant as The Count in Dracula by HumDrum

7. Tony Johnson as the Child Catcher in Chitty, Chitty, Bang Bang by CCADS

8. Stuart Riley as Roland in Constellations by Bench

9. Andrew Warner as Bernadette in Priscilla Queen of The Desert by Portsmouth Players

10. Readers’ Choice


1. Sarah Ash as Prospera in The Tempest by SSA

2. Rhian Gardner in Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang, by CCADS

3. Kim Harvey as Rizzo, in Grease by FMS

4. Leila Millson as Lucy in Dracula and Ruth Kelly in One Man, Two Guvnors by HumDrum

5. Becky Musgrave as Julie in Carousel by SDMS

6. Susie Rowland as Ariel, in The Tempest, by SSA

7. Gemma Valler as Mina in Dracula, by HumDrum

8. Katie Watson as Hedda in Hedda Gabler by Bench

9. Faye Williams as Marianne in Constellations, by Bench

10. Readers’ Choice


1. Beechwood Opera for the Marriage of Figaro at the New Theatre Royal. A young, entrepreneurial, ambitious, local, opera company producing exciting performances

2. Colin Jagger of University of Portsmouth for his 15 years of bringing class acts to the Portsmouth Chamber Music series

3. The Kalore Trio ‘for their exquisite music, beautifully played; the outcome of which was a truly memorable Sunday afternoon in Holy Trinity Gosport’

4. Meon Valley Orchestra, the area’s newest large ensemble which has grown to a full-blown orchestra of 45 players. Their charity concerts have raised nearly £8,000

5.The Petersfield Orchestra, ‘a class act whose sound was clear and resonant, with energetic and accomplished playing’

6. Portsmouth Choral Union for their performance of Vaughan Williams’ Sea Symphony in a memorable concert from ‘a well-schooled group of talented singers’

7. Portsmouth Grammar School’s Chamber Choir which performed with the internationally famous Tallis Scholars. They sang with accuracy and panache, unawed by their professional neighbours

8. The Renaissance Choir for their imaginative programming and their vocal blend. ‘Their excellent sound seems as if it comes from a single person’

9. Solent Symphony Orchestra for their performance of Saint-Saens’ organ symphony. ‘An orchestra whose skill and performing eloquence is equal to much larger and better known ensembles’

10. Readers’ choice

L. BEST VISUAL ARTIST Sponsored by Aspex Gallery

1 Caravan Gallery: A Portsmouth institution since 2000,  this last year they worked in Texas, Latvia, Northern Ireland, Scotland and locally at the National Trust site Mottisfont in Hampshire

2. Miesje Chafer: Maker of hand screen-printed and crafted products including bags and homeware, at her Hotwalls Studio

3.Jeannie Driver: Recent work plays with the boundaries between drawing and sculpture. She’s produced ambitious wall drawings and received an award from Arts Council England to develop her practice

4. Anna Heinrich & Leon Palmer: Portsmouth-based artists with significant international profile, they were commissioned to make a new digital work by students of Havant and South Downs College as part of their How to Speak Proper Pompey project

5. Jacqui Mair: A well-established Portsmouth-based illustrator, her new body of work was recently shown in Drawing With Scissors at Jack House Gallery in Old Portmsouth

6. Svetlana Ochkovskaya: Awarded the Journeys Festival International LOOK UP commission in October 2018

7.Clarke Reynolds: Participant in the Losing My Sight exhibition at the Central Library, increasingly in demand for talks about maintaining and developing his visual art practice while losing his sight

8. Josephine Rock: Winner of the Platform Graduate Award 2018 for a recent graduate from a university in the south-east

9. Samo: An artist, tattooist and owner of independent Play Dead Studio in Southsea. A trans activist and tireless advocate for inclusion and creativity

10. Readers’ Choice


1. Bed Time Bear, director: Mark Oakley & Gavin Damerell

2. Billy Bum, dir: Caroline Bryle

3. The Brother dir: Russell Simpson

4. Cure and Be Cured dir: Roy Hanney

5. Love in First Sight, dir: Billy Stevenson

6. Forever, dir: Marica Jagger

7. Brexistance, dir: Carol & Edward Lyon

8. Delicacy, dir: Michael Middleton-Downer

9. Readers' Choice