In a night filled with special performances including great performances by Janet Jackson and Bret Michaels who performed Every Rose Has Its Thorn with Casey James, the American Idol finale belonged to Lee DeWyze who was crowned the new American Idol. The night also was the last night for the superstar judge Simon Cowell. Paula Abdul and former Idol winners Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia, Carrie Underwood, Jordin Sparks, Taylor Hicks, Kris Allen appeared.
Lee DeWyze rendition of Hallelujah and his performance with Idol runner up Crystal Bowersox's performance of Falling Slowly from the film Once, was one of the highlights of just an ok Idol season. Even with Lee being declared the winner the highlight of the show was Paula Abdul's appearance in the tribute to Simon stating, "American Idol's not going to be the same without you, but, as only I can tell you, it will go on."
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