The IDOL GIVES BACK fundraising effort, which culminated Wednesday night with a two-hour television event, has raised almost $45 million to benefit various U.S. and international charities including the Children's Health Fund, Feeding America, Malaria No More, Save the Children's U.S. Programs and the United Nations Foundation.
This year, IDOL GIVES BACK was broadcast live from the AMERICAN IDOL stage and The Pasadena Civic Auditorium, where Queen Latifah emceed the evening and some of music's biggest stars, including Sir Elton John, Alicia Keys, Carrie Underwood, The Black Eyed Peas, Annie Lennox, Jeff Beck & Joss Stone and Mary J. Blige & the All-Star Band, performed. The evening also featured special appearances by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, Victoria Beckham, Morgan Freeman, Wanda Sykes, George Lopez, David Cook, Russell Brand, Jonah Hill, Bill and Melinda Gates.
"Once again, I am over overwhelmed by the generosity of the AMERICAN IDOL viewers, our sponsors and our special benefactors. I am so thankful to all of the celebrity guests and performers who appeared Wednesday night to support IDOL GIVES BACK" said Simon Fuller, creator of AMERICAN IDOL.
Still to be added to the extraordinary total, the iTunes Store, the No. 1 music retailer in the U.S., will donate net proceeds from sales of the Top 7 finalist performances to IDOL GIVES BACK. In addition, select guest performances from Wednesday's one-of-a-kind philanthropic event will also be featured on the iTunes Store (www.itunes.com). Check americanidol.com for regular updates on which performances will be available.
Donations will continue to be accepted via the Internet at www.americanidol.com and by telephone at 1-877-IDOL-AID (1-877-436-5243).
Corporate sponsors for this year's IDOL GIVES BACK were News Corporation, Ford Motor Company, Coca-Cola, AT&T, ExxonMobil, iTunes, FremantleMedia and 19 Entertainment.
Additionally, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is a not-for-profit partner on IDOL GIVES BACK.
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Feeding America is the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, we provide food to more than 46 million people through 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America. Feeding America also supports programs that improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. Donate. Volunteer. Advocate. Educate. Together we can solve hunger. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
AMERICAN IDOL is created and executive-produced by Simon Fuller, founder of 19 Entertainment; and executive-produced by Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia North America; and Ken Warwick, executive producer, FremantleMedia North America.
Visit americanidol.com for exclusive videos, interviews and photos of the finalists as well as special behind-the-scenes information and all of your AMERICAN IDOL news. For photos and interviews with the finalists, please visit foxflash.com/idol.