After gracing the American Idol stage for seven seasons, judge and pop icon Katy Perry has announced her departure from the popular singing competition show.
The news, shared through social media and later confirmed by ABC, marks the end of Perry’s tenure as a mentor and guide to aspiring singers.
When Perry made an appearance on Monday night’s episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, host Jimmy Kimmel asked her directly how long she planned to stay on Idol. Perry has been a judge on the show with Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie since ABC relaunched it in 2018.
“Well, you know, this fall, this September, I’m going to be doing this huge music festival in Brazil called Rock in Rio. It’s really exciting. It’s a big deal for people all over the world, especially my Brazilian fans,” Perry said in response to Kimmel’s question, before adding, “So I think this will probably be my last season for Idol.”
Perry, who has served as a judge on the popular show for seven seasons, said, “I love Idol so much. It’s connected me with the heart of America. But I need to feel that pulse of my own beat,” Perry continued, obliquely implying that she would be releasing new songs soon in addition to possibly going on a global tour.
When Kimmel questioned Perry about her choice to leave the show, she said, “Well, they’ll find out tonight!” to the question from her fellow Idol judges.
Perry later announced on Instagram that the upcoming season of Idol will be her final one. She captioned “Let’s play two truths and a lie: 1. I beat @usher at Monopoly Deal. 2. I’m headlining Rock in Rio this September. 3. This is my last season on @americanidol.”
Perry’s exit comes amidst rumours of potential changes to the show’s format, further fueling speculation about the reasons behind her departure.
However, sources close to the singer maintain that her decision is driven by a desire to focus on her music career, which has seen a recent lull compared to her earlier pop dominance.
ABC has yet to announce a replacement for Perry, but several names are already swirling in the rumour mill. With the show’s 21st season approaching, speculation is high about who will join returning judges Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan.