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Image: Katy Perry, Pete Wentz and Joss Stone
Joel Ryan  /  AP
Katy Perry, left, Pete Wentz and Joss Stone attend a news conference for the 2009 MTV European Music Awards in Berlin on Wednesday.
updated 11/4/2009 12:15:09 PM ET 2009-11-04T17:15:09

For Katy Perry, learning can be fun.

The singer, hosting MTV's European Music Awards for a second consecutive year, said that Thursday's show is a chance to combine performances by artists like U2, Foo Fighters and Leona Lewis with a remembrance of the 20th anniversary of the Nov. 9 fall of the Berlin Wall.

"As much as it has to be funny, you also want to help educate my generation or the generation after me that might not know the importance of the unity of the Berlin Wall when coming down — how it really affected people's lives," the 25-year-old Perry said Wednesday.

"It can't always be rock and roll and partying and liquor," Perry said. "You have to have a little meat on the bones."

That's not to say music fans and party connoisseurs won't go away with more than just a history lesson.

Irish rockers U2 will play a special 20-minute set in front of the Brandenburg Gate — which lies on the line that formerly divided East and West Berlin — that will be beamed to the 02 World Arena where the award show is being held.

Despite losing a performance by British singer Robbie Williams to a scheduling conflict, Grammy-winner Beyonce Knowles will perform "a very saucy set," too, said Richard Godfrey, the executive producer of this year's awards show.

Godfrey also said that American rapper Lil' Kim and David Hasselhoff, the "Baywatch" star who's had several hits in Germany, will also be there to hand out awards.

The EMAs feature 13 award categories with nominees from Europe, North and South America. Traditionally, many awards go to American artists who are also popular in Europe. This year's nominees include American acts like Jay-Z and Kings of Leon as well as European performers, including British singer Pixie Lott and the German band Tokio Hotel.

Berlin is the only city to host the awards show twice — in 1994 and this year — a decision MTV said it made to mark the 20th anniversary of the Berlin Wall's collapse.

Perry said she's acknowledging Berlin's 1920's post-World War I reputation for hedonism and entertainment, donning costumes inspired by Liza Minnelli's performance in the 1972 film "Cabaret," an homage to Weimar-era Germany and the decadence of Berlin.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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