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Katy Perry looks breathtaking as she makes emotional farewell to American Idol after 7 seasons

Katy, alongside her fellow judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie, was visibly moved

Faye James
Senior Editor
May 20, 2024
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As the curtains closed on American Idol's grand finale this Sunday, it was a night of emotional goodbyes and show-stopping performances, particularly for Katy Perry, who bid farewell to her judging duties on the beloved singing competition. 

Amid the glittering lights and soaring melodies, Katy's final moments on the show tugged at the heartstrings of everyone in the audience, marking the end of an era for both the star and her fans.

From the moment she stepped onto the stage in a breathtaking gown, the emotion was palpable. Katy, alongside her fellow judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie, was visibly moved. 

Host Ryan Seacrest, ever the comforting presence, checked in on her as the finale kicked off, to which Katy responded poignantly, "It’s my last few hours." Ryan, capturing the sentiment of the evening, encouraged, "Well, let’s enjoy them."

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The night was a celebration of Katy's time on Idol, filled with memorable moments. A special montage took us through Katy’s journey on the show, celebrating her camaraderie with Luke, Lionel, and Ryan. 

After the heartfelt trip down memory lane, Ryan posed the question many were thinking: "Are you sure you want to leave us?" Katy's emotional nod and her struggle to hold back tears spoke volumes about her deep connection to the show and her fellow judges.

Katy Perry with her fellow judges Lionel and Luke© Instagram
Katy Perry with her fellow judges Lionel and Luke

Highlighting her impact, Katy took to the stage to perform her 2020 hit What Makes a Woman.

For this special occasion, the song was transformed into a duet with finalist Jack Blocker, turning the soft ballad into a compelling dialogue. 

AMERICAN IDOL - "717 (Disney Night)" - Disney Night is back with more magic from Walt Disney World®  The Most Magical Place On Earth! The Top 5 each performs two beloved favorites from the Disney Songbook as America votes live coast to coast for the Top 3 heading to the finale. 
KATY PERRY© Getty Images
Katy Perry on Disney Night

Katy's outfit for the performance was as meaningful as her song—an eye-catching dress adorned with the faces of Idol contestants she has mentored over the years, symbolizing the personal touch she brought to her role as a judge.

In a fitting tribute to Katy’s musical legacy, Idol also featured a medley of her biggest hits performed by this season’s Top 12 women. The segment was a vibrant celebration of Katy's chart-topping career, though some might argue it would have been better placed before her duet, adding even more to the night's build-up.

AMERICAN IDOL  506 (Hollywood Week: Genre Challenge)  The search for the next superstar continues as American Idol kicks off its iconic Hollywood Week, with some of the most prolific alums in Idols 20-year history returning to mentor the contestants, including Jordin Sparks, David Cook, Lauren Alaina, Ruben Studdard, Chayce Beckham, Lee DeWyze and Haley Reinhart. Fan favorites from auditions will then take the stage for the Genre Challenge to sing their hearts out and impress judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie in hopes of making it through to the next round. Emmy® Award-winning host and producer Ryan Seacrest hosts American Idol, MONDAY
KATY PERRY© Getty Images
Katy hangs up her hat after 7 seasons

Katy's decision to leave Idol was first hinted at during a February 2024 appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live!. A game of Two Truths and a Lie took a surprising turn when Katy revealed, "I think this will probably be my last season of Idol." This casual revelation had since built up to the poignant farewell witnessed by millions.

While the night was tinged with the sadness of Katy’s departure, it was also a moment to crown a new Idol champion among the talented Top 3—Abi Carter, Jack Blocker, and Will Moseley. Yet, even amid the excitement of the competition, the spotlight lovingly lingered on Katy, a testament to her unforgettable impact on the show.

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