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Last Updated: Thursday, 26 April 2007, 08:36 GMT 09:36 UK
Charity Idol special raises $30m
Kelly Clarkson at Idol Gives Back
Previous winner Clarkson sang live at a special concert
US talent show American Idol has raised $30m (14.97m) in a charity TV special.

Focusing on children in Africa and the US, celebrities from Madonna to Bono featured alongside the show's contestants to ask for donations.

Live performances came from Scottish singer Annie Lennox and previous Idol winner Kelly Clarkson.

Viewers still picked their favourite contestants, although no-one was voted off during the special, with votes being carried forward to next week.

'Stupid poverty'

The 70 million calls and texts into the Idol Gives Back show was twice the amount of the previous week.

The two-hour event regularly crossed from the usual studio to a concert hosted by comedian and talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres at the Disney Hall in Los Angeles.

Madonna and Oscar-winning actor Forest Whitaker both made pre-recorded appeals for support. DeGeneres herself donated $100,000 (49,918).

In his filmed segment, U2 frontman Bono said: "People say you can't be the generation that ends brutal, stupid poverty, but we can and we will."

The Idol contestants closed the show with American Prayer - the song written by Bono and Dave Stewart some years ago about the AIDS crisis in Africa.

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