Are these the 5 best songs from American Idol (aside from William Hung’s She Bangs)?

With Fox TV show’s final season over after 15 years, it’s time to look back at the highlights, from Fantasia Barrino’s Summertime to Adam Lambert’s Queen audition and Kelly Clarkson’s Piece by Piece

PUBLISHED : Friday, 08 April, 2016, 2:12pm
UPDATED : Friday, 08 April, 2016, 3:50pm

American Idol wrapped up its 15-season run on Thursday night as one of the top shows in American television history. Trent Harmon was crowned the 15th and final winner of the Fox TV singing contest,

which first took the world by storm in 2002 and became part of the global TV culture.

Down the years the show featured many talents who have gone on to pursue careers transcending their first auditions in front of a panel of judges.

Hong Kong-born William Hung’s destruction of She Bangs may be a quintessential chapter in the American Idol scrapbook, but here are five more deserving highlights:

Fantasia Barrino, Summertime (April 14, 2004): George and Ira Gershwin probably weren’t on young viewers’ Pandora playlists until this eventual winner brought the Porgy and Bess ballad into the 21st century. Randy Jackson called the rendition the show’s best performance ever.

Paris Bennett, All I Do (March 14, 2007): Minnesota hasn’t had any representation in the winner’s circle, with nine out of the 14 past champs hailing from the South. Edina’s pride and joy came closest with her fifth-place finish, wowing Stevie Wonder with a very grown-up take on one of his sassier numbers.

Adam Lambert and Kris Allen, We Are the Champions (May 20, 2009): Allen may have taken the crown, but runner-up Lambert got the bigger prize as the night’s backup band, Queen, ended up employing him as its lead vocalist.

Phillip Phillips, Home (May 22, 2012): with the help of his acoustic guitar and a drum corps, the Season 11 winner presented the series’ new unofficial theme song and the bestselling single from any contestant.

Kelly Clarkson, Piece by Piece, (February 25, 2016): how fitting that one of the high notes of the final season was hit by its first winner, a rendition of her latest single so moving that it wouldn’t have been shocking if the pregnant singer had given birth on stage, just so her new child could ask for a tissue.

Tribune News Service