The most recent season of American Idol has once again caused a stir among viewers, with judge Katy Perry coming under fire for her treatment of a contestant during the audition process.
On March 5th, 2023, Sara Beth Liebe, a 25-year-old mother of three, took to the audition rooms to perform Amy Winehouse’s hit song, “You Know I’m No Good”.
However, Perry was not satisfied with the performance and requested that Liebe sing a different song, offering some advice to the contestant.
Not all viewers of the popular talent show agreed with Perry’s tough love approach and took to social media to express their opinions.
Some felt that Perry had bullied Liebe on live national television before the contestant even had the chance to perform.
One Twitter user wrote, “They let Katy Perry bully this woman on live national tv before she even started singing. So ugly.”
Another viewer accused Perry of “mom shaming” Liebe and suggested that the judge had insinuated that the contestant had been “laying on the table too much” to have three children by the age of 25.
Despite the criticism, Perry remained steadfast in her belief that she was providing honest feedback to the contestants.
“Show us what your voice can do. Take it to the limit. No looking back. Sing it like it’s your new dream,” Perry instructed Liebe. After the contestant performed “Bennie and the Jets”, Perry compared her to a “comic strip character just came to life” and reiterated her belief that Liebe needed to take singing seriously if she wanted to succeed.
Perry’s fellow judges were divided on Liebe’s performance, with Luke Bryan voting “yes”, Lionel Richie voting “no” after warning Liebe to take the process seriously, and Perry ultimately voting “yes” to send the contestant to Hollywood.
Despite this show of support, some viewers remained critical of Perry’s treatment of Liebe. However, others defended the judge’s approach, arguing that being honest with contestants is an important part of the audition process.
As one viewer put it, “Being honest is now bullying.” Another suggested that Perry’s critics should consider the history of American Idol, a show that has long relied on judges providing tough feedback to contestants. “Katy Perry judging a contestant and a show that judges contestants? Shocking. Ever heard of @SimonCowell?” the Twitter user quipped.
Ultimately, it is up to viewers to decide whether Perry’s feedback to Liebe was too harsh or necessary to help the contestant grow as a performer.
As the competition heats up and more contestants face the judges, it is likely that Perry’s approach will continue to divide audiences.