The show averaged 12.2 million viewers from 7-10 p.m. ET, according to Nielsen

By Michele Corriston
February 01, 2016 11:45 AM
Frank Micelotta/FOX

brightcove.createExperiences(); Grease was definitely the word for TV fans Sunday night.

Fox scored a ratings smash hit with its first foray into a live televised musical, with Grease: Live averaging 12.2 million viewers from 7-10 p.m. ET, according to Nielsen preliminary numbers.

That means it’s the best-rated production of its kind since NBC’s 2013 The Sound of Music Live!, beating the network’s newer offerings Peter Pan Live! and The Wiz Live!, Variety reports.

Grease: Live – which differentiated itself from NBC’s shows with a studio audience and multiple stages – averaged 14.3 rating/13 share in adults 18-49, making Sunday Fox’s second-highest night of non-sports entertainment programing after the Empire season 2 premiere.

The musical also found success on social media: There were 1,396,368 tweets mentioning Grease on Sunday night, according to marketing technology company Amobee Brand Intelligence.

Critics and tweeters alike raved about stars Julianne Hough, Aaron Tveit and Vanessa Hudgens, whose father died of cancer shortly before she took the stage as Rizzo.