Just in case you thought that Alibaba’s Singles’ Day festivities couldn’t possibly get any more fabulous, it’s now been announced that Katy Perry will be headlining this year’s event.
Perry, better known as “Fruit Sister” to her Chinese fans, will perform at the “11.11 Countdown Gala Celebration” in Shenzhen on November 10th, the day before Singles’ Day, at an event sponsored by TMall, one of China’s largest online retailers, owned by Alibaba.
She will be the “global ambassador” for the gala, and organizers hope that the pop superstar will be able to draw in a worldwide audience to watch the event. According to the Global Times, Perry is the second international name connected with the showcase, following Super Bowl producer David Hill, who has been named the director-general of the gala.
In case you’re unaware, Singles’ Day — November 11th or 11/11 — is China’s single biggest online shopping day of the year. Originally started as a holiday to celebrate the “bare branches” of the world, in recent years it has become an orgy of online spending, the likes of which the world has never witnessed before.
Last year, Alibaba raked in an insane $9.3 billion in just the first 12 hours of the day, as wives around the country hopped off their husband, mid-coitus at midnight, and hopped onto the internet to start shopping, breaking penises in the process.
Perry is enormously popular in China. She first visited in 2014, putting on concerts in Beijing and doing the splits on the Great Wall. Last year, she tore up Shanghai’s Mercedes-Benz Arena in her typical sequin-y, animal printed style.
However, her colorful costumes have not been without controversy. A few days after her Shanghai concert, she stirred up a mild political storm by donning a sunflower dress and a Taiwanese flag on stage in Taipei. Some interpreted the singer’s wardrobe as a sign of solidarity with the Taiwanese independence movement, bringing to mind the “Sunflower Movement,” the 24-day long student-led occupation of the Taiwanese legislature in March 2014.
China’s “Fruit Sister” was dubbed Taiwan’s “Sunflower Goddess” by activists and many fans worried that Perry wouldn’t be allowed back into the mainland.
Obviously, that has not been the case, she visited Shanghai Disneyland with boyfriend Orlando Bloom last month.
Anyway, we are anxious to see if this year’s Singles’ Day gala will be an improvement over last year’s event, which featured a meh video message from President Frank Underwood.
And an extremely awkward appearance by James Bond: