updated 05/21/2014 AT 3:00 PM ET
•originally published 05/21/2014 AT 9:40 PM ET
The host has often denied requests to hear him croon on the Fox reality singing competition. On Wednesday, however, he finally gave in at the season finale, where Jena Irene Asciutto and Caleb Johnson duked it out for the top prize.
During the two-hour live show – which featured performances by Kiss, Demi Lovato, Paramore and all three of the show’s judges, Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick, Jr. – Seacrest braved the Nokia Theater stage to sing the first few lines of “Right Here Waiting” before being joined by Richard Marx on the piano.
“I apologize,” Seacrest told the audience after getting his “moment in the sun.”
“My prediction? You’re going to have a record deal before this night is over,” joked Harry Connick, Jr.
Seacrest’s reply? “I hope not.” In part, perhaps, because the longtime TV personality came down with a good old-fashioned case of stage fright.
As Marx told PEOPLE after the performance, Seacrest “was a nervous wreck.”
What viewers thought of his performance:
RYAN SEACREST SINGING ON AMERICAN IDOL AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!! PRICELESS!!!!!!!
irma rojas (@irmarojas19) May 22, 2014
Just discovered how deeply Ryan Seacrest can t sing. He apparently sold his singing ability to the hosting devil. #Idol
Mike Roe (@MikeRoe) April 10, 2014
Kellie DiMaggio (@KellieDiMaggio) May 22, 2014
DudesReviewIdol (@DudesReviewIdol) May 22, 2014
Erin McClory (@ErinMae21) May 22, 2014