Katy Perry couldn’t hold back her tears at an audition for American Idol, the TV program of which she has been a judge for some years. This is not the first time that the singer shows her empathy with the participants, but she has experienced several emotional moments since she joined the project. Now she did a claim to the American nation after hearing the testimony of a young survivor of a shooting at his school.
Trey Louis, a 21-year-old mattress salesman, performed the Whiskey Myers song “Stone.” His voice made the panel of critics give him a standing ovation and also dedicate him a round of applause.
“Stone” is about a man’s heart that is “going to break a million times”. The contestant’s lyrics and experiences moved not only Katy Perry, but also judges Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie. The atmosphere turned melancholic when Louis revealed that he had decided to dedicate himself to music after survive a shooting at his school.
“I’m from Santa Fe, Texas,” the participant shared before the judges in the clip of his audition that was broadcast this Sunday. “In May 2018, an armed man entered my school. I was in art room one and he shot art room two, before heading over to where I was. I lost many friends, eight students were killed, as were two teachers, ”he explained.
The judges were stunned by this revelation, Richie heaved a heavy sigh, while Bryan’s eyes filled with tears. For her part, Katy Perry looked puzzled, then dropped her head on the desk and sobbed. “Our country…failed us”he pronounced moments later, as he raised his head again.
“This is not right,” Perry added. “You should be singing here because you love the music, not because you had to go through it. I hope you remind people that we have to change, because you know what? I have fear also”, the singer told her, while her companions touched her shoulders to try to comfort her.
For his part, Richie regretted these situations of violence in schools that were tolerated for “quite a while.” “It has become a norm”added.
Through a post on his Instagram account, Louis recounted how he experienced the shooting at his school. The events occurred on May 18, 2018.while working on an art project that was due at the end of class.
Around 7:30 a.m., loud noises began in the institution. Those who were in the same classroom as the young man panicked because the noise came from a nearby room. The contestant of American Idol he explained that he went into a supply closet with a friend, who covered for him so he could drop out of college. “Get out of here, I have the door”his partner told him.
“I ran into the hallway and out the back door of the school. I realized that I had just survived a shooting and that, of all my friends who sat at my table in art class, I was the only one who made it out“, wrote.
According to data from The Washington Post, last year 46 shootings were recorded in schools. This figure is the highest since 1999. While, so far in 2023, the Armed Violence Archive has recorded 94 mass shootings in the US.