CHICAGO -- Celebrity after celebrity bid Oprah Winfrey farewell in Chicago, surprising her during a double-episode taping of "The Oprah Winfrey Show" that will precede her finale.
Winfrey received a standing ovation from the crowd at the United Center. She thanked the 13,000 fans who came to watch the taping for their support.
Aretha Franklin sang "Amazing Grace." Tom Hanks was host for the evening. Michael Jordan told Winfrey she inspires him. Tom Cruise, famous for his couch jumping on Winfrey's show, was there. Jerry Seinfeld gave a comedy routine. And Madonna said she is among the millions who are inspired by Winfrey.
Winfrey announced in November 2009 that she would end her show after 25 years. Tuesday's taping will air May 23 and 24, before Winfrey's final show on May 25.