No one could ever accuse Katy Perry of not taking the preparation for her 95-date California Dreams Tour seriously. "I'll give you a sneak peek of my day," Perry told Rolling Stone when she called on Wednesday morning. "After this interview I'm going to have a nice healthy breakfast. I'm on a meal plan, which absolutely sucks — but on Sundays I get to have a cheat day where I go buck wild and eat In-N-Out Burger. Then I'll work out, go to a vocal lesson, run through the entire set at rehearsals, go to dance rehearsal until 10:00 p.m. and then go home and sort through e-mails concerning the production. I feel like I'm training for the Olympics!"
Perry is determined to make her first arena headlining tour — which will take her around the world — a jaw-dropping spectacle, on par with Lady Gaga and Pink's recent shows. (She was so blown away by Pink's last tour that she hired the director who worked on it.) "I just really want to raise the bar," she says. "Touring is no longer an ordinary thing where you play an instrument in jeans and a T-shirt. It has some pizazz these days, and I'm definitely bringing the pizazz with a lot of bells and whistles. The show has a Broadway feel to it. It's got a storyline that's going to be very interesting, kind of loosely based on my life, but a cartoon version."
The show draws a lot of inspiration from the artists Will Cotton and Mark Ryden. Cotton — who was the art director on Perry's "California Gurls" video — incorporates candy and baked goods into his art. Ryden is known for drawing pieces of meat alongside surreal images of creepy, doll-like children. "I have this whole thing in my show that is about candy and cupcakes and meat," Perry says. "It's both really sweet and shocking, but not in a sexual way."
She's most excited about the newest addition to the California Dreams show: smell-o-vision. "It's the first concert that's going to smell good," she says. "It's going to smell like you're in cotton candy heaven. It's a fun little nuance. I am a woman of detail, and you will be seeing that — even down to the 15 outfit changes I'm doing in concert."
The tour starts February 20 in Portugal and wraps up November 2 in Dublin — and Perry insisted that adequate downtime be built into the schedule. "This time around when people ask 'how was Barcelona?' I'm not gonna be stupid and be like, 'Uh, your room service is great.' That was really annoying the first time. I'd go to these magical places and literally just have time to taste the room service. I wanna go and see Gaudi this time...I also have some two-week breathers where I can see my husband [actor Russell Brand] and regain some stamina."
As if prepping for a 95-show tour isn't enough, Perry is also plotting her next music video and gearing up for her performance on the Grammys on February 13th. She won't get into details, but she says it's her "favorite performance ever."
She also recently shot a guest appearance on How I Met Your Mother. Does she portray the long-awaited mother? "I'm not allowed to say," she says. "I just did it basically because I'm obsessed with Neil Patrick Harris. He's really sweet, and the cast on the show was really nice to me and forgiving of my bad acting skills."
Neil Patrick Harris is also acting in the upcoming Smurfs movie, which will feature Perry as the voice of Smurfette. "I wasn't allowed to watch the Smurfs as a child," she said. "But I made up for that now. I am fucking Smurfette!"