The BBC stalwart attracted 9.91m viewers and a 44.2% audience share between 6.30pm and 8.30pm, with a peak of 11.3m (47.8%) at 8pm with a Hollywood-themed edition.
The Simon Cowell founded show failed to breach the ballroom dancing show’s average audience throughout transmission, with an average of only 8.21m viewers.
However, many will have caught repeat showings on ITV1 and ITV2 of the live performance ahead of Sunday’s results show, which beat Strictly’s last Sunday.
BBC One also got solid ratings for Merlin (5.51m/22.9%) and a reasonable turnout for Casualty (4.1m/17.1%), with their non reality show output.
In total, BBC One beat ITV1 over the whole of Saturday with 28.9% versus 24.9%. Lagging in third place, BBC Two had 4.6%, ahead of Channel 4’s 3.5%, and Channel 5’s 3.4%.