Performances by Justin Bieber, Eminem, Lady Gaga, more draw 26.5 million viewers.
By Gil Kaufman
It stands to reason that any TV show boasting performances from bands that have sold more than 15 million records over the past year between them would be a huge hit. Which is why, thanks to Eminem, Lady Antebellum, Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry, Sunday night's 53rd annual Grammy Awards posted the best numbers for the program in a decade.
The Hollywood Reporter reported Monday (February 14) that, according to preliminary numbers from Nielsen, the show was watched by 26.5 million viewers, a 3 percent improvement over last year's Grammy numbers (25.8 million) and the best figure for the show since 2001.
The combination of a relentlessly hyped Gaga interview that aired on '60 Minutes' just before the show, combined with a smorgasbord of performing stars that ranged from legends such as Bob Dylan and Mick Jagger to Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Bruno Mars, a rare appearance by hip-hop icon Dr. Dre and surprise Album of the Year winners Arcade Fire helped make the show a must-see event.
And though viewers were treated to the spectacle of Gaga finally busting out of her space egg during the show, Green frolicking with outer-space Henson Puppets and Gwyneth Paltrow, and Bieber dancing amid a stage full of break-dancing ninjas, when the dust settled, the dark-horse win by Arcade Fire provided the show with a water-cooler moment that kept viewers interested until the entire three-and-a-half-hour spectacle wrapped up.
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