While 18-year-old Laine Hardy was crowned season 17’s winner, he was in good company as season four winner Underwood returned to the stage to perform her current single “Southbound.” Her energetic set had judges Bryan, Katy Perry, and Lionel Richie get up from their chairs to dance along.
Following her performance, Underwood spoke with Ryan Seacrest and recalled winning American Idol in 2005. What memories does she have of that night? “Being horrified, scared, nervous, excited, all of the above,” she told Seacrest.
Bryan shared the stage with contestant Laci Kaye Booth where the pair collaborated on the Police’s “Every Breath You Take” on a smoke-filled stage after he performed his current single “Knockin’ Boots.”
Dan + Shay, Kane Brown and Jon Pardi also shared the stage with American Idol hopefuls as each played their latest single as well as shared a duet with one of the contestants. Dan + Shay kicked off their performance with “All To Myself” before Madison VanDenburg joined in on their previous chart topper, “Speechless.”
Later, American Idol winner Hardy joined Pardi on guitar for a collaboration with the singer on his previous hits “Dirt On My Boots” and “Night Shift,” while Alyssa Raghu shared the stage with Brown for “Lost in the Middle of Nowhere” following his performance of “Good As You.”
Watch the country performances from the season finale of American Idol below.