The big finale for “American Idol” Wednesday night will feature the usual mix of legendary artists and current pop stars, as well as several tributes to the big names in music we’ve lost recently.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the female finalists will pay tribute to the late Donna Summer with help from R&B and disco icons Gloria Gaynor, Thelma Houston and Gladys Knight, as well as Nelly Furtado, Sheila E., Jennifer Holliday and Kristin Chenoweth, the latter of whom will sing the Barbra Streisand/Donna Summer duet “Enough Is Enough” with Jessica Sanchez. The girls will also perform with Chaka Khan later in the show.
The male finalists will perform songs from the Bee Gees, in honor of the late Robin Gibb, who died on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Creedence Clearwater Revival rocker John Fogerty — two of whose songs were performed this season — will duet with Phillip Phillips, while country icon Reba McEntire will sing with Skylar Laine. Joshua Ledet will perform with former “Idol” champ Fantasia, creating the long-awaited “Mantasia” mash-up. Another former “American Idol” champ Jordin Sparks will duet with Hollie Cavanagh on a Broadway show tune.
In addition, legendary crooner Neil Diamond will perform a group number with the boys, and Jessica will join Jennifer Holliday for another round of “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going,” which Holliday originated in the stage musical version of “Dreamgirls.”
As previously reported, Aerosmith and Rihanna will also entertain during the blowout finale, which will see either Jessica or Phillip crowned the “American Idol” champ.