Ever since Katy was banned from Sesame Street, my girls have loved her! It was a fateful accident when my girls entered my husband’s office, at the age of four, as he watched the video of Katy and Elmo to see what the commotion was all about. He thought it was a whole lot of nothing, but the girls were instantly in love with “Ms. Katy.” And, really, what is there not to love (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHROHJlU_Ng)?
This love affair continued between my girls and Ms. Katy. We permitted it but limited their access to Katy’s girl power songs: “Fireworks,” “Roar,” “Love Me,” “Part of Me,” “By the Grace of God.” Not surprisingly, they know every lyric to the limited repertoire. When the Katy Perry: Part of Me movie came out, they asked to see it. They were only 5 so my husband and I went to check it out. Frankly, it was fairly clean, but even so we opted not to let the girls see it. We did not want them to see Katy crying, falling apart when she got Russell Brand’s text that he had filed for a divorce, even though she picks herself back up and does her job (i.e. entertaining several hundred people in Brazil). There is always something admirable in not allowing life to keep you down. However, there was too much reality for my 5 year olds did to face. Fast-forward two years!
Katy Perry was on her Prismatic tour. Only 14 days after the girls’ birthday Katy had a concert in Tampa, Florida, only a few hours away from home. We decided to take them to the concert, a huge leap of faith, and got prime seats costing a small fortune. The girls knew nothing about it other than the fact that their birthday gift was going to be late this year. When we arrived, we were relieved by the droves of young girls, ages 4 to 12, making their way to the venue. Still, despite the costumes, the girls suspected nothing. Even when they posed with a Katy impersonator, who sweetly waited for us past the end of his (yes, he!) shift, they were unsure of what it all meant.
We had purposefully skipped the opening acts but accidentally watched the end of the second opening act. Baby B was livid: “where is she? You said Katy Perry was coming out? She didn’t come out! Where is she?” My poor baby was in tears so much so that the women in the row in front of us tried, like me, to reassure her, but she would not be comforted. And then the music began; we knew Katy would be signing “Roar.” My girls were lost to the spectacle, and what a fabulous spectacle it is—rivals the best of Disney on stage any day!
The concert itself was amazing, not because I have never been to a better one or heard a better singer, but because Katy is in tune with her audience. I have never been to a concert (and I have been to many) in which there were so many young girls, many younger than my twins. At some point Katy asked, “how many are attending a concert for the first time tonight?” The majority, I’m guessing, over 75% raised their hands. Katie seems to be very conscious of her audience as the show itself has no profanity and frankly her wardrobe is very conservative—take into consideration that I am part of the Madonna, Cyndi Lauper generation. There are some lyrics that were not age appropriate, but six months later, I can tell you that the girls were not scarred or their behavior changed in any manner. The bottom line is that Katy is very nice and playful with the audience, I would dare say sweet. Yet she never seemed condescending or fake but always genuine. As a parent, she completely won me over.
The most important part of this is that we, their parents, got to experience our girls’ very first concert with them! There is only one first, and we had the privilege to share it with them. There will be more, but none will the first!