Pop princess Demi Lovato’s introduction into show biz was a gig at age 10 on the kids’ TV show Barney & Friends, along with (rumored frenemy) Selena Gomez. She went on to find success in the vast Disney universe along with peers Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers, parlaying starring roles in the hit film Camp Rock and the TV show Sonny With a Chance into a recording contract at sweet 16.
And like so many child stars before her, she succumbed to the pressures of fame and found trouble with drugs and alcohol, cutting and bulimia. But instead of giving up, she got help.
Today, in addition to topping the pop charts, Lovato has been a judge on The X Factor, had a recurring role on Glee, become a New York Times best-selling author (for last year’s Staying Strong: 365 Days a Year), and will release the memoir A Journal next month.
Lovato takes the stage Sunday at downtown Miami’s AmericanAirlines Arena in support of her fourth studio album, Demi, along with openers Christina Perri and MKTO. You’ll hear all her hits, including Skyscraper, Heart Attack, Here We Go Again, Neon Lights and Really Don’t Care, plus her more rocking version of Let It Go, Idina Menzel’s hit song from the Disney smash Frozen. She talked to Miami.com before her trip:
What’s a Demi Lovato concert like?
You’ll have to come out to see. I can promise that you’ll have fun — the show will definitely be heartfelt and full of surprises. At my show in Albany, there was even a proposal. I also recently announced that motivational speaker Spencer West will be joining my tour, which I’m so excited about. People will definitely leave the show feeling inspired!
How did you end up recording “Let it Go?” and are you a fan of the film?
Well, I’m signed to Hollywood Records, which is owned by Disney, so it all came around full circle. When I first heard the song I fell in love with everything about it — the lyrics especially spoke to me, as it has such an inspirational message and truly stands for everything I believe in. And yes I’m a fan! When I attended the premiere, I was blown away. It’s definitely one of my favorite Disney films to date, and Idina Menzel’s performance is spectacular.
You’ve always gotten critical praise for your singing voice — when did you realize you could sing well, and did it come naturally?
It definitely takes a lot of practice and work, just like anything else — nothing in life comes easy. But I’ve always loved to sing — since I was little, it’s been one of my favorite things to do, so for me, the work was worth it.
Who are some of your musical inspirations?
Kelly Clarkson has been an idol of mine since a young age — she’s incredibly talented.
What inspired you to write “Staying Strong”?
I’m always looking for new ways to connect with my fans. My “Lovatics” are incredible and have been there through everything, and writing this book was a way for me to give back to them. Not only was this a therapeutic experience for myself, but it’s also a reminder for others to stay strong and persevere.
When will “A Journal” come out, and what can your fans expect from it?
My journal will be available on Oct. 7, and it’s a follow-up to Staying Strong. Keeping a journal is so important when expressing yourself. The goal is to inspire my fans to also write down their thoughts and feelings daily, with an encouraging quote to coincide.
You’ve been through more than most 21-year-olds — do you feel perhaps a bit wiser than your peers?
I’ve definitely been through a lot and learned so much over the past couple of years. I wouldn’t say I feel wiser, because everyone has a different journey, but I’ve learned a lot about myself and the world and I now have a different outlook on life.
Info: Demi Lovato World Tour at AAA is at 7 p.m. Sunday; Ticketmaster; $29.50-$69.50.