Some of the country’s best local dance music musicians as well as some of their international counterparts will battle it out for top honours at South Africa’s first ever Dance Music Awards.

Fans will have a hard time choosing between some of the finest who will compete with each other, some in the same category.

This includes one of the country’s biggest musical exports, DJ Black Coffee, going head to head with the likes of Kyle Watson and DJ Shimza.

With the competition so stiff, it is now up to the public to decide the winner.

Nominations for the inaugural competition is now open, with the winners expected to be announced next month.

“Following the announcement of the first annual official Dance Music Awards South Africa this past July, South African fans took to the internet to vote for the favourites for the past six weeks,” event organisers said.

They added that from scores of dance music artists, the list had now been cut to five per category, which ranges from best male and female DJs, best producer and even best festival.

“The nominee selection was held entirely online, with the Dance Music Awards South Africa managed as an audience-voted award event dedicated to South African dance music,” they said.

Now, fans are encouraged to vote for their favourites until October 2 through the official website and social media.

“With the fully transparent user-voted award process, this gives the public the power to choose the award winners,” the organisers said.

“The competition will be driven strictly by social media and online interaction, and no panel will dictate the nominees.”

Categories for the award includes Black Coffee going up against Tembisa born DJ Shimza, 5FM’s Kyle Cassim as well as electronic DJs Watson and Chunda Munki.

Those in the Smirnoff best female DJ category include DJ Zinhle competing with house music veteran Lady Lea, Abby Nurock, SimStar and Lady Sakhe.

Black Coffee and Watson are once again nominated, but this time for best producer alongside Jazzuelle, Ryan Murgatroyd and Da Capo.

Best live act is also a hotly contested category, which includes Goldfish, Black Motion, Good Luck, Pop Art and Mi Casa.

In a bid to be as inclusive as possible, there is an award for the best club of the year, with Joburg’s Truth Nightclub going up against Cape Town’s Shimmy Beach and several others.

Those who bring dance music to the masses will also receive an accolade as there is a category for best dance radio show award, where 5FM’s Cassim and Das Capital will not only compete with each other but will also go up against Touch HD’s Kyle Worde and YFM’s Da Kruk, while The Urban Beat on Metro FM have also been nominated.

There is also the Heineken best festival category, where the public can choose their favourite musical event from the likes of Ultra, Spring Fiesta, Oppikoppi, H20 and Rocking the Daisies.

The awards also seek to recognise the impact international artists have on the local house music industry.

This is as musical heavyweights such as Atjazz, Lars Behrenroth, The Layabouts, Stimming and Deadmau5 are nominated in the best international DJ and best international producer category.

Other artists who have been nominated include Jullian Gomes, Prince Kaybee, Lady Zamar, Bucie, Timo ODV, Amanda Black, Tamara Dey and DJ Ganyani.

The winners will be announced at a dinner in Joburg on October 5. For more information, visit Africa/