Here's why Kelly Clarkson just petitioned to change her last name to Brianne.

Kelly Clarkson Is Changing Her Last Name, So Say Goodbye To "Clarkson"

It's the end of an era.

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Everyone knows the name Kelly Clarkson, but it sounds like fans are going to have to get used to a new name. On Wednesday, Feb. 16, Kelly Clarkson filed a petition to legally change her name to “Kelly Brianne,” per court documents obtained by NBC. The name choice isn’t random — Brianne is Kelly’s given middle name — but fans may be wondering why she’s making the change. Kelly’s decision comes a few months after her lengthy divorce from ex-husband Brandon Blackstock was finalized at the end of 2021. The singer gave a reason for her decision in the documents, so here’s why Kelly Clarkson is changing her last name to Brianne.

In the petition she filed to the Los Angeles Superior Court, Kelly wrote that she had a “desire” to change her name to something that feels more like herself. “My new name more fully reflects who I am,” Kelly said.

After filing “irreconcilable differences” in June 2020 from her now ex-husband Blackstock, Kelly opened up about her journey of divorce on the TODAY Show in September 2020. “I mean, it’s no secret,” she told TODAY. “My life has been a little bit of a dumpster ... personally, it’s been a little hard the last couple months.”

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Kelly has continued to be open about her emotions regarding her divorce both in interviews and on her own talk show. She even got advice on finding love after divorce from First Lady Jill Biden during a Feb. 24 interview on The Kelly Clarkson Show. Biden got candid on her own experience with the divorce from her first husband Bill Stevenson in 1975.

My mother always said to me, ‘Things are going to look better tomorrow,’” the first lady said. “And if you take one day at a time and things will get better. I look back on (my divorce) now and I think if I hadn't gotten divorced I wouldn’t have met Joe. I wouldn’t have the beautiful family I have now. I think things happen for the best.”

Biden continued by expressing that over time Kelly will be able to heal and find love again. “You’re going to be surprised. And I can’t wait until that day comes for you. You’re going to call me up and you’re gonna say ‘Hey, Jill, you were right.’”

Kelly has previously stated she’s not currently looking to get married again. In March 2021, she expressed on her show she’s happy focusing on herself. “I'm actually in that place where I think a lot of people, I've heard, that go through divorce, it's almost like you start dating yourself again,” she said. “Like you actually make time for you again, and I love dating me.”

And while it might feel like the end of an era, Kelly *Brianne* will always be our American Idol.