Ngaiire, Christine Anu and Claire Edwardes lead the finalists for the 2019 Australian Women in Music Awards (AWMAs), set for Oct. 9 at Brisbane’s Powerhouse.

Future soul singer Ngaiire is up for a hattrick, with nods for artistic excellence category, diversity in music and the songwriter award, a hotly-contested category that also features Mojo Juju and Thelma Plum.

Christine Anu
Christine Anu

In the full list of nominations, published today, “My Island Home” singer Christine Anu scores a brace of chances, for artistic excellence and diversity in music, while percussionist Claire Edwardes is up for the creative leadership and excellence in classical music.

The lifetime achievement award will be contested by a handful of greats, Joy McKean, Marcia Hines, and Vika and Linda Bull, while a triumvirate of celebrated artists — Go-Betweens drummer Lindy Morrison, country singer Alison Hams and one time Eurovision rep Dami Im — will compete for the humanitarian award.

Lindy Morrison
Lindy Morrison

Veteran broadcaster and author Jane Gazzo is up against Ange McCormack and Jules LeFevre in the music journalist honour, while the emerging artist category highlights stars-of-the–future Alice Skye, Ella Fence and Lisa Caruso.

Jane Gazzo
Jane Gazzo

All up, 15 AWMAs will be handed out on the night, including three new award categories for excellence in classical music, music journalism and image making, with winners selected by a panel of industry professionals.

A special award will be presented to the 2019 inductee for the AWMA Honour Roll.

“Queensland is pleased to host the AWMAs for the second consecutive year, profiling our state’s commitment to gender equality and providing opportunities for women,” comments Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk in a statement unveiling the 2019 AWMAs shortlist.

Vicki Gordon 2019 press shot
Vicki Gordon

The event is a “fantastic addition to Queensland’s vibrant arts scene,” adds Di Farmer, minister for child safety, youth and women and minister for the prevention of domestic and family violence.

”They are another great opportunity to showcase the tremendous creativity and depth of talent of our many female artists and I hope it’s a springboard to further and well-deserved success.”

Performers on the night will include Renée Geyer, Katie Noonan, Clare Bowditch, Melinda Schneider, Ngaiire, Kaylah Truth, Cheryl Barker, Tamara-Anna Cislowska.

Katie Noonan
Katie Noonan

The event provides both an opportunity to “celebrate tremendous talent,” and offers a platform for artists and music practitioners to “come together, to learn and empower one another,” says founding director and executive producer Vicki Gordon, who established the gala to shine a light on the impressive and often unsung accomplishments of women across the Australian music industry.

Organisers this year received almost double the nominations, from every state and across all areas of diversity, reflecting “the urgent need for change in the Australian music industry,” Gordon notes.

See the full list of nominations below.

ARTISTIC EXCELLENCE AWARD
Christine Anu
Nai Palm
NGAIIRE

CREATIVE LEADERSHIP AWARD
Claire Edwardes
Elaine Chia
Katie Noonan

DIVERSITY IN MUSIC AWARD
Christine Anu
Lisa Cheney & Peggy Polias (Making Waves)
NGAIIRE

EMERGING ARTIST AWARD
Alice Skye
Ella Fence
Lisa Caruso

EXCELLENCE IN CLASSICAL MUSIC AWARD
Caroline Almonte
Claire Edwardes
Sarah-Grace Williams

EXCELLENCE IN IMAGE MAKING AWARD
Chloe Jean
Melaine Knight
Ntombi Moyo

FILMMAKER AWARD
Aimée-Lee Xu Hsien Curran
Tashi Hall

HUMANITARIAN AWARD
Alison Hams
Dami Im
Lindy Morrison, OAM

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Joy McKean, OAM
Marcia Hines, AM
Vika and Linda Bull

LIVE PRODUCTION AWARD
Jenny Moon
Kait Hall
Laurie May

MUSIC JOURNALIST AWARD
Ange McCormack
Jane Gazzo
Jules LeFevre

MUSIC LEADERSHIP AWARD
Elise Reitze-Swensen
Lynette Irwin
Sue Telfer

MUSIC PHOTOGRAPHER AWARD
Jessica Vaini
Kerrie Geier
Tashi Hall

SONGWRITER AWARD
Mojo Juju
NGAIIRE
Thelma Plum

STUDIO PRODUCTION AWARD
Elise Reitze-Swensen (Feels)
Kathy Naunton
Virginia Read