In May 2017, ABC announced its revival of American Idol, and Katy Perry was the first judge attached to the new-look iconic singing competition show. The judges’ table was rounded out by Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan, and the trio has remained together for seven seasons. American Idol has been renewed for another season, but Perry’s tenure ended with the Season 22 finale on Sunday, May 19.

Perry performed “What Makes A Woman” from her 2020 album, Smile, and while eating pizza and punching around beach balls from the judges’ table, Perry was showered with a tribute medley of her hits — “Teenage Dream,” “Dark Horse,” “California Gurls” — performed by this season’s top-12 girls. Perry posted a behind-the-scenes video to X (formerly Twitter) showing her tossing a piece of pizza into the audience. “A pizza my heart will always be on the #idol stage,” she wrote.

Perry’s Idol tenure was largely defined by viral moments. She was accused of mom-shaming and was booed, but Bryan defended her. Last April, Perry garnered comparisons to Tyra Banks on TikTok for how she delivered results to Idol contestants, and she recently suffered a wardrobe malfunction. All in all, it’s arguable that Perry’s presence was the most pop culturally relevant aspect of the show.

Perry detailed her plans to depart Idol during a February appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live!

“I think this probably will be my last show, my last season for Idol,” Perry said. “I mean, I love Idol so much. It’s connected me with the heart of America, but I feel like I need to go out and feel that pulse to my own beat, you what I’m saying, Jimmy?”

The diamond-certified pop star additionally revealed she had “some things planned for this year” and that she’d “been in the studio for a while.” She added, “I want to go and see the world and maybe bring new music.”

While American Idol is confirmed to return for a 23rd season, the show has not announced who will replace Perry as a judge alongside Bryan and Richie.

Posted in: Pop