Kris Allen Wins Season 8 of 'American Idol'
After being voted into the Top 3, Allen returned home to Arkansas and his hometown to film the material for the next two American Idol episodes.
Allen's homecoming parade was greeted by a crowd estimated to be greater than 20,000. Allen performed at three concerts in Little Rock and Conway, Arkansas, playing many of his popular songs during the competition, including "Man in the Mirror", "Ain't No Sunshine", "Falling Slowly" and "She Works Hard for the Money" at the venues, as well as "Come Together" at the studio of local Fox affiliate KLRT-TV. He accompanied himself on all of these songs with his guitar.
During the final performance show, Allen performed a reprise of "Ain't No Sunshine", Simon Fuller's choice of "What's Goin' On" and the coronation song, "No Boundaries".
During the final results show, he performed a duet with Keith Urban, singing Urban's single "Kiss a Girl", as well as a series of medleys with his fellow Season 8 contestants. Before the results were announced, Allen performed "We Are the Champions" with eventual runner-up Adam Lambert and Brian May and Roger Taylor of Queen.
On May 20, 2009, Kris Allen was declared the winner of the eighth season of American Idol, becoming the first married contestant to claim the title, as well as the sixth winner from the Southern United States (only Jordin Sparks, raised in Glendale, Arizona, and David Cook, from Blue Springs, Missouri, were from outside the South). Allen also became the first winner to accept a trophy shaped like a microphone. Nearly 100 million votes were cast during the finale, setting a new world record for a televised singing competition. Unlike the previous season, the winning margin was undisclosed. Numerous sources, including the Associated Press, claimed that the margin "wasn't even close". Allen has admitted that the alleged disparity in votes was a "total surprise" to him.
Certain commentators labeled the win as an "upset" since runner-up Adam Lambert had received a significant amount of media attention throughout the season and was widely perceived to be the show's front-runner. His victory was seen as highly controversial as viewers and the media speculated about the details of the result. However, during the Top 3 results show, host Ryan Seacrest had revealed that the margin between Allen and Lambert was less than a million votes. Fox and AT&T have stated that they "stand by the outcome" and are "absolutely certain" that "Kris Allen is the American Idol"