Katy Perry is scheduled to take the stage at the 2015 Grammys with domestic violence survivor and activist Brooke Axtell. Perry is one of many celebrities performing, but this will be a first for Axtell. Read on for all the information on Axtell as well as her performance plans with Katy Perry.
1. Axtell Is Performing a Written-Word Piece At the Grammys
Brooke Axtell will perform a written-word piece while at the Grammy Awards while Katy Perry performs her ballad “By the Grace of God”. Axtell spoke with People about the performance, stating:
It’s an honor to collaborate with Katy in this way. She has been very devoted to various aspects of female empowerment. It’s going to bring a lot of encouragement and freedom to those who hear my story and know that they are not alone in this.
2. She Was Trafficked By Her Nanny
Axtell resides in Austin, Texas and is an activist for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking. She uses her own personal experiences to inspire others. Axtell opened up about her sex trafficking story to Keye TV, explaining:
I was trafficked by my nanny in Dallas, Texas when I was seven years old during a time when my mom was hospitalized and he was entrusted with my care … Because of the coercion, the fear and the shame I didn’t disclose the abuse to my family.
3. It Was Actually Grammys Producer Ken Erlich’s Idea For Perry to Collaborate With Axtell
Grammys producer, Ken Erlich, originally had the idea to put Perry and Axtell together to do the special collaboration. He was reportedly inspired by a meeting with White House officials that he attended last year. Erlich told the Huffington Post:
It is one thing to have Katy sing, but why would we not want to accompany it with someone’s personal experience who could humanize [domestic violence] and make it relatable to millions of men and women who are survivors.
4. Axtell Is the Director of Communications for Allies Against Slavery
Axtell is a writer, speaker and activist for sex trafficking as the Director of Communications and Engagement for Allies Against Slavery. Axtell’s personal bio reads:
Brooke Axtell is the Director of Communications and Engagement for Allies Against Slavery, a non-profit devoted to ending human trafficking. She also founded Survivor Healing and Empowerment (S.H.E.), a healing community for survivors of rape, abuse and sex-trafficking. As an advocate, Brooke supports survivors through their recovery process with a particular focus on creative expression. Her commitment to international women’s rights issues has led her to serve on The Gender Equality Impact Panel for Katerva, a community that identifies and funds the world’s leading sustainability initiatives. She is a member of the Speaker’s Bureau for Rape, Abuse, Incest, National Network (R.A.I.N.N.), the largest anti-sexual assault organization in the U.S. Brooke, also, serves on the board of The Refuge, the first long-term therapeutic care program for survivors of child sex-trafficking in Austin, Texas.
Some of the magazines and online sources Axtell has been featured in include Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Psychology Today, Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, Washington Times and Fox News.
5. She Is Also A Song-Writer
In addition to being a trafficking survivor, Axtell is also a poet and performing song-writer. She’s the Winner of the Phyllis Smart Young Prize for Poetry and has a critically acclaimed book called “Kore of the Incantation.” Her last book of poetry, “Daughter of the Burning,” was a finalist for The Violet Crown Award by the Writer’s League of Texas.