LOS ANGELES — Fantasia Barrino's fantasy of pop stardom became a reality Wednesday night as she was named the winner of "American Idol."
All 12 finalists will go on tour together this summer, something they practiced for Wednesday with a lengthy medley of the series' previous songs.
Seacrest chatted with the judges in their dressing rooms beforehand, and several celebrities were interviewed on the red carpet, including Nicole Richie from the Fox reality show "The Simple Life" and Sharon Osbourne.
The "American Idol" finale may seem like the Super Bowl of karaoke, but this year it truly reached the level of momentous sporting event proportions. Thousands gathered at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C., to cheer for Barrino and at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta to support DeGarmo.
Gray, from the competition's first season, sang "The Star-Spangled Banner," and the governors of both states had side bets: Georgia had to send peaches to North Carolina if Barrino won, and North Carolina had to send blueberries to Georgia if DeGarmo won.