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Katy Perry leaving “American Idol” as judge, teases new album: 'I've been in the studio'

Perry revealed that she's exiting the singing competition series after the upcoming 22nd season: "I need to go out and feel that pulse to my own beat."

Katy Perry kissed a girl, and now she's kissing American Idol goodbye.

After the pop superstar announced Monday on Jimmy Kimmel Live that the singing competition series' upcoming 22nd season might be her last as a head judge, EW has confirmed that the 39-year-old will exit the ABC show after seven seasons on the panel next to fellow recording artists Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan.

"Actually, this fall, in September, I'm going to be doing this huge music festival in Brazil called Rock in Rio, it's really exciting, it's a big deal for people all over the world, especially for my Brazilian fans. I think this will probably be my last show, my last season for Idol," Perry told Kimmel. "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 know what I'm saying, Jimmy?"

<p>Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty</p> Katy Perry on 'American Idol'

Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty

Katy Perry on 'American Idol'

Kimmel pressed Perry on whether or not she's told her fellow Idol judges, and though she didn't confirm one way or the other, she estimated that Richie and Bryan "figured" something was up since she's "been in the studio for a while," seemingly working on a new album.

"They know that I have some things planned for this year. It's going to be a very exciting year," she said, later adding, "Let's just say I'm creating space for my new wingspan. I love them so much."

Perry further elaborated that she wanted "to go and see the world and maybe bring new music," and left the door open to "maybe" come back if the show asks her in the future.

EW has reached out to representatives for American Idol, Perry, Richie, and Bryan for comment.

Perry first joined American Idol for season 16 in 2018, after releasing her 2017 album Witness. She went on to drop another full-length album, 2020's Smile, during her tenure on the show, though the record became her first LP of original material since 2010's Teenage Dream to not debut atop the American charts.

Still, she has steadily released music across the last few years, including successful singles like the Daddy Yankee duet "Con Calma," her Alesso collaboration "When I'm Gone," and the holiday hit "Cozy Little Christmas."

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