On Sunday’s episode of the singing competition “American Idol”, fans were outraged at Katy Perry, 38, for her treatment of contestant Sara Beth Liebe; a young and cheerful 25-year-old mother of three.
With a mischievous red mane, this Californian newcomer candidly confessed that she is no musical prodigy other than when singing in her church choir or belting out tunes at karaoke.
Perry, who had made a crass comment about being such a young mother of three, boomed out in disbelief: “Is this your dream?”
Liebe nervously stammered, “Umm…”
“If it’s not your dream, you might need to leave because there’s a lot of dreams behind you,” Perry stated.
A nervous Liebe confessed that she was “still processing” the fact of being far away from her kids while facing Katy Perry, Lionel Richie (73), and Luke Bryan (46) before them. To encourage her further, Katy requested that she perform a song as soon as possible.
“Freak us out, Freaky Friday,” Perry stated.
Liebe rendered Amy Winehouse’s “You Know I’m No Good” with lackluster enthusiasm, and Perry cut in with a stern “Come on! We need more!” undeterred by the interruption, Liebe kept singing.
“That’s not enough,” at the end of the song, Perry said. “Try ‘Bennie and the Jets,’” she said, adding Liebe had nothing to risk, as it’s “not her dream yet.”
Perry told her to “show us what your voice can do, take it to the limit, no looking’ back.”
“Sing it like it’s your new dream,” she continued.
The contestant followed Perry’s advice and reached the upper limits of her vocal range with an impressive cover of Elton John’s classic. This wowed Perry so much that he kept calling out instructions even during the second song!
“More of that! Hold it out,” Perry said.
Liebe put her all into following Perry’s advice, and the judges rewarded this effort with thunderous applause. She almost felt faint while practicing, yet was elated by their roar of approval in response to her second attempt.
“Accidental American Idol,” Perry called her.
Perry’s eyes lit up with enthusiasm as he exclaimed, “I feel like a comic strip character just came to life.” Bryan then proceeded to express his “love” for Sara Beth’s performance.
“Look, if it’s not your dream, it’s not gonna go far because I also respect everyone that’s walking through that door who will lay down their life for this golden ticket [to Hollywood],” Perry said about the potential of other candidates moving forward to the next stage of contention.
At the end of it all, Bryan and Perry voted to let Liebe advance in the competition; however, Richie made a different decision based on his instinct that she wasn’t taking this seriously enough.
“Sara Beth, you’re in the dream now. Go get your golden ticket,” Perry said. “Hurry before the dream ends!”
“Boo to Katy Perry for mom shaming Sara Beth. Insinuating that she has been ‘laying on the table too much’ to have 3 kids by age 25. A young mother following a dream while raising her children should be raised up not put down,” one person wrote on Twitter.
“Truly, @katyperry has proven she doesn’t care about all women,” another said.
“I really do not like how Katy Perry just treated Sara Beth on #AmericanIdol,” another person said. “I don’t watch this show at all and my tv was already on the channel but what I witnessed was not right. They let Katy Perry bully this woman on live national tv before she even started singing. So ugly.”
“Some of the things Katy perry says to the female contestants is [mind-blowing emojis],” another noted.
Last week, Perry was brought to tears during a performance of “Stone” by Whiskey Myers an alumna from Santa Fe High School. The survivor had been personally affected by the 2018 mass shooting that occurred at her alma mater, and her emotional rendition moved Perry deeply.
“Our country has f–king failed us!” Perry yelled. “This is not OK!”