The Brit Awards notched up 5.4 million viewers on Wednesday night – a slight drop from last year’s ceremony.
The event, which featured a politically charged performance from Katy Perry, awards for the late David Bowie and tributes to George Michael, peaked at 6.2 million and claimed a 26% share of viewers.
It was the most-watched show in its time slot, with BBC1 airing Who Do You Think You Are? and The Real Marigold Hotel and Channel 4 screening Location, Location, Location.
Last year, when an emotional Adele dominated the event and swore on air, 5.8 million viewers tuned in, peaking at 6.5 million.
In 2014, just 4.6 million watched the music awards on ITV, the lowest figure since 2006.
But the event recovered to 5.8 million the following year, when Madonna took a tumble on stage.
ITV said Wednesday night’s awards had a 46% share of 16 to 34-year-old viewers – the highest share for that age group of any programme broadcast on TV this year.