Adele was sensationally beaten by Kate Bush in the in the Pop Music category at the South Bank Sky Arts Awards in London.
The Rolling In The Deep hitmaker was widely expected to continue her winning streak - which includes a haul of Grammy and BRIT awards - and take home the prize for her album 21 ahead of PJ Harvey's Let England Shake and Bush's 50 Words For Snow but failed to pick up the gong at the event held at the Dorchester Hotel on Tuesday.
Sir Tom Jones presented the prize for Bush's first set of completely new songs since 2005 when she released Aerial.
However, Lynne Ramsay's compelling adaptation of novel We Need To Talk About Kevin which was largely unrecognised during awards season earlier this year beat Senna and Attack The Block to scoop the Best Film gong, which was designed and signed by Turner prize winning sculptor Anish Kapoor.
Other winners included Sherlock for TV Drama and Fresh Meat for TV Comedy.
Tim Minchin's musical Matilda won the Best Theatre award and he admitted he is still shocked by the success of the show.
He told Sky News: "I guess if I can ever step back I can't believe it, but I've been with it for three years and it's slowly become what it is. It's not like you wake up one day with a hit musical, but all the accolades are an incredible bonus."
The ceremony was hosted by Melvyn Bragg.
Full list of winners from the South Bank Sky Arts Awards 2012:
Outstanding Achievement: Michael Frayn
Classical Music: Ll?r Williams - Beethoven's Piano Sonata Cycle
Opera: The Damnation of Faust, ENO
Pop: Kate Bush, 50 Words for Snow
TV Comedy: Fresh Meat
TV Drama: Sherlock, BBC1
Theatre: Matilda at the Cambridge Theatre
Dance: The Metamorphosis
Film: We Need to Talk About Kevin
Literature: Claire Tomalin for Charles Dickens: A Life
Visual Art: Grayson Perry: The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman, British Museum
Times Breakthrough Award: Sophie Bevan