Prime minister David Cameron has released a message of support for GFEST, London’s annual gay arts and culture festival.

The two-week festival starts on November 8th and will be held at venues across London.

Mr Cameron said: “I am very pleased to be supporting this year’s GFEST. It is absolutely right that London should host such a celebration of new and established artists. And this festival is a real testament to the creativity and diversity of our gay artists and the vital contribution they make to the UK’s cultural scene.

“I would also like to pay tribute to all those who are giving up their time to bring the festival together. Events like this enrich our society and challenge us to think more about the world around us.”

GFEST, now in its fourth year, has also attracted support from author Sarah Waters, Labour MP Ben Bradshaw and deputy mayor of London Richard Barnes.

Venues include the National Gallery, Victoria and Albert Museum, Rich Mix, Hampstead Town Hall and Cochrane Theatre.

Artists at the event were selected through open-call auditions and the selection panel includes journalist Julie Bindel, writer Paul Burston and GFEST artistic director Niranjan Kamatkar.

PinkNews.co.uk publisher and founder Benjamin Cohen is a trustee of GFEST.

Highlights:

Visual Arts: New Zealander Xavier Radic, who has exhibited in Strasbourg, New York and San Francisco. He is a curator of many art exhibitions in New Zealand and has been invited again to show at the Florence Biennale 2011.

Helen Churchill returns to GFEST after 2008, and has exhibited work at a number of venues and has completed several private commissions for clients in the UK.

London based Matthew Stradling was selected by Sothebys to represent Britain in the Young Artist International Touring Exhibition and was also selected for the BP Portrait Award Exhibition.

Maitree Siriboon has exhibited in Italy, Singapore, Indonesia, Netherlands, Malaysia – and Thailand, where he lives and works as artist and curator for Whitespace Gallery .

Short Films: Protect Me From What I Want by Dominic Leclerc opens with a cruising scene at an underground archway, where Saleem and Daz embark on a dangerous, thrilling sexual adventure.

Kent Thomas’ Broken looks at young hustler who relives his dark journey from an upper-middle class home to living and working on the street.

A timely documentary from Michael Urwin, gay couples discuss love, marriage, religion and spirituality, heroes and hopes for the future generation in Mosaic: Love and Marriage.

Kiss Boxing by Corinne Bott: game in which the opponent is being knocked out – by a kiss.

Moby Longinotto’s platinum blonde Jheri Jones lives on a remote trailer park in Mississippi. But unbeknown to her neighbours Jheri has a secret in The Joneses.

Performances: Artistic director of Homo Promos and acclaimed performer, director Peter Scott-Prestland will present a semi-autobiographical cabaret show of original witty sketches, songs, savage political satire, and personal revelations from 1973 to the present.

An accomplished performer and a regular on BBC Radio 7, Lorraine Bowen, will be playing her Casio organ on its ironing board stand, dancing to hits from her albums, entertaining with
hilarious surreal stories.

A Peggy Ramsay Foundation award winner, hugely talented Marcus Reeves will present a delightfully witty collection of songs and poetry from a decade long performance career.

A prolific performer at festivals such as Edinburgh Fringe, Glastonbury Festival and Sydney Mardi Gras, Rosie Wilby reflects musically on her days trying to make it in the music business at the height of Britpop.

GFEST (08/09) performer Guy Harris presents ‘A homage and personal interpretation’ of glam rock star Jobriath’s most moving, witty songs.

Listed in the 30 most influential LGBTQ people in Chicago by Windy City Times, International performer Nikki Patin presents a solo show blending music, spoken word and burlesque.