American Idol contestant Sara Beth Liebe has quit the show following Katy Perry’s controversial ‘mum-shaming’ comments, and now the twenty-five-year-old has spoken out about her experience on the show.
In her initial audition, the mum of 3 took to the room to sing her rendition of Amy Winehouse’s classic track ‘You Know I’m No Good’.
When Liebe revealed that she was just twenty-five years old with 3 kids, Perry stood up, to which Liebe responded: “If Katy lays on the table, I think I’m gonna pass out.”
Perry hit back in what some have called a ‘mum-shaming’ statement: “Honey, you’ve been laying on the table too much.”
The California native told the judges before singing that she wasn’t a huge musician, but had experience in church choir and enjoyed karaoke nights with her friends.
“Is this your dream?” Perry interjected, looking unimpressed by the quirky contestant’s bubbling and nervous energy.
“If it’s not your dream, you might need to leave because there’s a lot of dreams behind you,” the ‘Teenage Dream’ singer continued, before telling Liebe to start her song: “Freak us out, Freaky Friday.”
After finishing her performance, Perry immediately told the twenty-five-year-old: “That’s not enough.”
Perry’s fellow judges nodded in agreement, and she continued: “Try ‘Bennie and the Jets’. Try it.”
The ‘Waking Up In Vegas’ vocalist declared that it did not seem like the contestant’s dream yet with her performance, adding: “Show us what your voice can do. Take it to the limit. No looking back. Sing it like it’s your new dream.”
After finishing her stunning rendition of the Elton John track, Liebe said that she felt like she was “about to pass out”.
Perry responded more positively to Liebe’s second performance, calling it “accidental American Idol,” as she compared the contestant to a “comic strip character” that had come to life.
“Look, if it’s not your dream, it’s not going to go far,” Perry began her concluding comments.
“I also respect everyone who’s walking through that door who will lay down their life for this golden ticket.”
However, Perry ultimately voted yes, alongside Luke Bryan, although Lionel Richie gave her a no.
“Sara Beth you’re in the dream now. Go get your golden ticket,” Perry said as Liebe walked away successfully.
Viewers took to social media at the time to condemn Perry’s off-colour treatment of the contestant.
One person wrote: “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.”
Another said: “Hey Katy Perry singing wasn’t Loretta Lynn’s dream either and now she’s a legend I’m just saying.”
Liebe herself responded to the criticism of Perry’s comments on social media, saying: “There was a ‘joke’ that was made that’s gotten some attention.”
She went on to call Perry’s comment “embarrassing” and “hurtful.”
“At the start of my audition, before I sang, I mentioned that I had three children and was a young mother, and Katy Perry made a joke that wasn’t super kind,” she continued.
She added: “I think that women supporting and uplifting other women is so cool, and I think that mom-shaming is super lame.”
The young mother has also revealed exactly why she quit the show, writing in a TikTok: “I don’t normally share videos like this but I wanted to share this moment from right after my audition when I was having a literal panic attack because I was so overwhelmed with gratitude and shock.”
However, she captioned the post: “Gratitude is the ONLY word that comes to mind. I can’t wait to continue supporting my new friends and to continue making music. That’s what it’s all about after all.”
She added: “Oh and also, can we talk about how gooooood Katy looked in that shade of purple and how Lionel SLAYED that orange jacket?”