When celebrities hang out at Bustle, we want to give them the chance to leave their mark. Literally. So we hand them a pen, a piece of paper, a few questions, and ask them to get creative. This time pop star Kim Petras is leaving her mark in the Bustle Booth.
When you listen to Kim Petras’ bold and honest newest single, "Sweet Spot," it's easy to assume that the pop star has always been this self-possessed. But the 26-year-old wants you to know that's not the case. "I'm an immigrant from Germany, so I really didn't have much confidence [growing up]," she explains, sitting across from me at Bustle's New York office on May 15.
For much of her life, Petras says, she went by the "fake it until you make it" rule. Yet as she grew into herself more, she stopped having to pretend to be anything she wasn't. These days, says the star, "I just feel much more competent and I know that there's people that want to hear what I have to say.”
Clearly. Since moving from Germany to Los Angeles as a teenager, Petras has released hits like "Feeling of Falling", "Heart to Break," and "I Don't Want It All," among others, accumulating over 140 million global streams. “Broken”, one of her newest singles, has already made it into the Top 10 of the iTunes Pop Chart, and most of her upcoming tour dates sold out during pre-sale. Her new single, "All I Do Is Cry," came out on May 23, and over the summer, she'll be performing at June's World Pride NYC, followed by August's Manchester Pride alongside Ariana Grande and Years & Years.
When Petras comes to Bustle's office, she's wearing a one-piece leotard and tan platform pumps, and carries a hand-beaded hot pink Susan Alexandra purse in her left hand. It's obvious that despite all the changes in her life and career over the years, the star has a clear understanding of who she is — and why people should care about her music.
"The song of the summer is definitely "Sweet Spot,"" Petras declares, adding with a laugh that the song is "going to be in all the gay clubs." Despite its upbeat tempo, though, the track, as well as Petras' other recent releases, has more serious roots. "Heartbreak for sure inspired this [new] music," the singer explains, adding that the songs are meant to show her fans the parts of her that are "not always just super happy."
Even when it's tough, Petras is dedicated to channeling her hardest moments into pop anthems. She calls her drive her "number one skill," explaining, "I always have ideas. This is why I am where I'm at in life. I'm persistent. I only want to put out quality [art]."
Regardless if you're in love or completely heartbroken yourself, Petras' new music will likely stay in your head all summer long. For more on the artist, check out her answers to our Bustle Booth questionnaire, below.