Music legends Queen, Lionel Richie, Kiss and Rod Stewart took to the American Idol stage on Thursday (21May09) as college student KRIS ALLEN was crowned the series winner in a shock result.
Chart-toppers like the Black Eyed Peas turned out in force to perform with show contestants in the star-studded two-hour finale, which saw underdog Allen, 23, beat off fierce competition from judges' favourite Adam Lambert, 27, after a record 100 million votes were cast.
Carlos Santana and Jason Mraz each performed hit songs with the Top 13 finalists, while fourth place contestant Allison Iraheta sang Time After Time with Cyndi Lauper.
Second runner-up Danny Gokey also sang a duet with Lionel Richie, while Queen Latifah belted out Cue The Rain with former Idol hopeful Lil Rounds and Steve Martin pulled out his banjo to perform Pretty Flowers with another two contestants.
Lambert fulfilled a childhood dream as took the stage with Kiss, singing the band's Detroit Rock City and Rock and Roll All Nite, while Allen sat with Keith Urban to sing Kiss A Girl.
Before the winner was announced, Lambert and Allen were accompanied by rockers Queen and a choir for a rousing rendition of We Are The Champions.
The eighth series of Simon Cowell's hit TV talent search has featured visits from a number of superstar mentors, including Smokey Robinson, Slash and Jamie Foxx.