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Idol: Kris Allen Steals Sunshine From Idol Foes

Apr. 1 2009, Updated 11:21 a.m. ET

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We already knew Kris Allen had the look, but the jury was still out on his ability.

No more. Dancing on piano keys, and complemented by a string quartet, the handsome Allen belted out a soulful rendition of Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone that significantly bolstered his chances of advancing in this season's American Idol competition.

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The judges agreed, including praise-miser Simon Cowell, who told the 23-year-old last night's was his "best performance so far." Kara DioGuardi likened his work to artistry, while Paula Abdul said his recreation of the Bill Withers classic made it like she was "hearing that song for the first time."

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While some critics have speculated Allen was in over his head, the strong showing should save him from elimination this week and pave the way for more good things.

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Check out tonight's results show (at 9/8c on Fox) to see if Americans agreed with the panel, and don't bet against it -- as the 90's proved, the people love those handsome, charming Arkansas boys.

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