BBC news readers perform Abba's Dancing Queen and Mamma Mia
BBC's Children in Need is on course to beat the £37m raised last year after a seven-hour entertainment extravaganza.
Its host Terry Wogan described it as the "greatest" show to date.
Stars from the worlds of music, sport, television and theatre took part and when the show ended at 0200 GMT, the total raised had reached £20,991,216.
BBC news readers performed an Abba medley, while Sir Terry Wogan and Tess Daly took part in a special edition of Strictly Come Dancing.
Sir Terry failed to win, with judge Bruno Tonioli describing his dance as "a good performance for radio".
Last year's Children in Need raised over £19 million on the night, with the final appeal total topping £37 million.
This year's appeal got under way at 1900 GMT with a performance of the charity single Stay With Me by McFly.
I am completely overwhelmed by the way the country has come together in support of BBC Children in Need, demonstrating such generosity in these tough times
David Ramsden, BBC Children in Need
Sir Terry presented the show with Fearne Cotton and Tess Daly.
It was themed "Do Something Different", with viewers and stars encouraged to venture outside their normal routine to raise money.
Girls Aloud, Will Young, Alesha Dixon, the Sugababes and the casts of EastEnders and Coronation Street were among stars taking part.
Take That donated £250,000 after singing their new song Greatest Day.
A spokesman said the money came from the Take That Trust - which has been boosted by £1 from each ticket from the band's last tour and most of the money from their Marks and Spencer modelling deal.
Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond wore a dog collar to impersonate a miserable minister.
He appeared in a BBC One Scotland sketch as the Rikki Fulton character the Rev IM Jolly.
Stars of music, TV and sport have been appearing to support the BBC's Children In Need appeal
Dressed in tight-fitting flares and platform boots, six BBC newsreaders, including Fiona Bruce and Nicholas Owen, sang a variety of Abba hits.
Top Gear's Richard Hammond took a grilling from Ashes To Ashes character Gene Hunt, who said he looked like a ferret, a hamster and a gerbil before allowing him a spin in his red sports car.
The cast of ITV1's The Bill switched channels to perform a medley of Blues Brothers hits, including Jailhouse Rock.
Coronation Street stars got into the spirit of things by taking some expert fashion advice from How To Look Good Naked's Gok Wan, who dressed in drag.
The cast of EastEnders performed a musical extravaganza, and an exclusive preview of Doctor Who's Christmas episode was screened.
BBC Radio 2 broadcast a 13-hour music marathon on Friday, before handing over to the main appeal on BBC One at 1900 GMT.
Radio 2 listeners raised just under £2m for the appeal. Presenter Chris Evans contributed £16,039 of his own money to round the total up to the million mark.
Listeners to Wake up to Wogan raised £500,000 by bidding in the Things Money Can't Buy auction.
One anonymous caller bid £100,000 for a guitar master class with Dire Straits star Mark Knopfler.
David Ramsden, BBC Children in Need chief executive, said: "I am completely overwhelmed by the way the country has come together in support of BBC Children in Need, demonstrating such generosity in these tough times, and I'd like to say a massive thank you to everyone involved.
"We can now focus our attention on finding more great projects that can change young lives for the better."
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