Jennifer-Jessica high point in 'Idol' finale

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 24 2012 12:32 PM | Updated as of May 25 2012 08:34 AM

Filipina-Mexican-American Jessica Sanchez (right) performs "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" with Grammy-winning singer Jennifer Holliday in one of the American Idol Grand Finale's highlights in Los Angeles, California on Thursday. The other finalist, Philip Philipps, eventually won the contest. Photo by Mario Anzuoni, Reuters

MANILA, Philippines -- The much-awaited duet of "American Idol" finalist Jessica Sanchez and Tony Award winner Jennifer Holliday during the show's grand finale on Thursday (Manila time) was the high point in the two-hour star-studded extravaganza, "Idol" viewers and TV critics said.

The Associated Press called the performance of the "Dreamgirls" showstopper "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" a standout, while E Online said it resulted in "chills and goosies were plentiful."

"Oh man, it's pure divahood, power and emotion; this is going to be one of the most-viewed clips on YouTube on Thursday as they go back and forth, huge voices in full display,"New York-based newspaper Newsday said in its review.

"Nobody's holding back; at the end the judges are jumping up and down like crazy, and the audience is on its feet. Sanchez needed someone to push her to these heights -- they should really have these duets with superstars during the voting part of the finale," it added.

Critic Michael Slezak of TVline.com wrote: "And then Jennifer Holliday and Jessica Sanchez tore the face off of music as we know it, flipped it, revesed it, performed an exorcism on it, and made it whole again. Or something insane like that. Mama Holliday scared the tarnation out of me, and I loved it."

"I could’ve/should’ve blacked out when the performance was finished, but there was still the matter of crowing the American Idol season 11 champ," Slezak wrote.

For the Los Angeles Times, the performance "offered a glimpse into the future for the young Sanchez."

"She's been a professional belter all season, hitting all the right notes with passionless precision. Sanchez has been compared to a host of divas all season, but it's been impossible to get a read on her musical heroes. That's because Sanchez seems groomed for 'American Idol,' a vocal purebred whose mission in life was to compete on this show," the newspaper wrote.

Local celebrities awed

Local singers including Zsa Zsa Padilla and Journey's frontman Arnel Pineda also praised the Sanchez-Holliday duet.

Below are the tweets of our local singers:

Arnel Pineda: "Bravo! Bravo! That was an awesome performance with the legendary Jennifer Holiday. One of the best seen on TV."

Agot Isidro: "Looking back, the Jennifer Holiday/Jessica Sanchez number was the highlight of that show. Aminin."

Zsa Zsa Padilla: "Kakilabot naman Jennifer Holiday and Jessica!!! Yippeeee!!! #happiness"

Carol Banawa: "Waaaaaaaaaaaah!!! Sorry dumadagundong pa rin sa kaba at paghanga ang ? ko from @JSanchezAI11 and jen holiday's number! Astig talaga!"

Jim Paredes: "Wow.. diva duel.. Jessica isn't blinking at all.. go go go go go ...After that, I need a cigarette. And I don't even smoke....I am sure the LA fire department was on standby during that last number....Jessica ... Jessica....Jessica.. has the adulation of the world...Can't shake that performance. Am still there...aerosmith song is just passing by"

Ogie Alcasid: "Jessica and the great Jennifer holiday! Best performance ever! What a blessing!"

Karylle: "Standing ovation sa bahay!"

Jaya: "Tears all around what a great blessing to have seen Jessica sing with the original Dreamgirl!!! Oh my Lord!!!"

Ryan Cayabyab: "I JUST GOT HIT BY LIGHTNING TWICE, 2 TRILLION VOLTS! JENNIFER AND JESSICA DOING AND I AM TELLING YOU. SUNOG NA SUNOG PA AKO HANGGANG NGAYON...ABO NA AKO. HUHUHUHUHU."