Hosted by Davina McCall, Alan Carr and Dr Christian Jessen, the charity fundraiser pulled in an 8.2% audience share between 7.30pm and 2am, peaking with around 2.1m for Cheryl Cole's performance.
Channel 4 enjoyed its most popular Friday night since early last month during the Paralympic Games thanks to the broadcast, which raised £6 million for charity.
Elsewhere, Piers Morgan's Life Stories scored an unexpected high for the secrets of actress Felicity Kendal - the programme logged 4.14m (18.3%) for ITV1 in the 9pm hour and 201k (1.1%) on +1.
However, Have I Got News For You remained dominant for BBC One with 5.15m (22.4%) in its usual half-hour slot from 9pm.
At 9.30pm, the second episode of romantic comedy Mr and Mrs Jones could only muster 2.42m (11%), down 700k on last week's opener.
Stephen Fry's QI led BBC Two's night with a solid 2.21m (11.1%) at 10pm, while Mastermind (2.01m/8.8%), Gardeners' World (2.03m/8.6%) and Natural World (1.97m/8.8%) drew almost identical audiences earlier on.
Eddie Stobart: Trucks and Trailers kicked off Channel 5's peak time schedule with 1.01m (4.3%), but football documentary Being Liverpool netted just 554k (2.5%) an hour later.
Overall, ITV1 beat BBC One to score another Friday night primetime victory, with 22.4% (+1: 0.7%) versus 19.1%. BBC Two claimed third place with 7.7%, just ahead of Channel 4's 7.7% (+1: 0.5%), and way clear of Channel 5's 2.6% (+1: 0.2%).
More 4, which also averaged 2.6% across primetime, managed to tie with Channel 5's fifth place due to its airing of Taken (967k/4.7%), which was the biggest multichannel show of the day.
The Walking Dead's season three premiere, which attracted record figures in the US last Sunday, made its UK debut with 369k (2%) on FX in the 10pm hour.
BARB ratings data supplied by Attentional