Alexandra Burke was given a standing ovation – and the highest number of points in the series so far from the judges – as she closed the second live episode of Strictly Come Dancing with a powerful paso doble.

The singer, 29, stunned the audience and the judges with her routine to Jennifer Lopez track Ven a Bailar with partner Gorka Marquez.

Notoriously critical judge Craig Revel Horwood gave no verbal comment to Burke after her routine, instead just standing up and fist-pumping the air to show his admiration.

Head judge Shirley Ballas told Burke: “What can I say, you shift your weight from foot to foot. You had amazing content… you were fierce, you brought it, you did your thing, you were not afraid of him. I loved it!”

Darcey Bussell added: “Oh my, the strength, the drama… there is an art within you, you have this wonderful sense of how you express the music through every ounce, every muscle in your body.

“It’s so beautiful to watch, I was on the edge of my seat – I didn’t even know what I was watching at one point I was so taken!”

Bruno Tonioli said: “You blew me away honey! The secret of a great performance is, when you witness it, you feel it with them, and I felt everything you felt in every moment of the dance.”

Burke – whose mother, singer Melissa Bell, died shortly before Strictly began – was given 36 points from the judges, the highest single score of the series so far.

That score combined with her mark from last week, 24, means she ends week two on 60 points and is in third place on the leaderboard, behind Debbie McGee and Aston Merrygold.

Viewers were equally flabbergasted by Burke’s performance as they took to Twitter in their droves to commend her, many of them admitting to having to go back to watch her dance multiple times.

One fan wrote: “I’ve now watched @gorkamarquez1 and @alexandramusic’s dance about 10 times. Incredible! #strictly.”

Another said: “@alexandramusic …. we had to watch it twice @bbcstrictly.”

“Watched Alexandra and Gorka’s Paso Doble about 5 times now. #Strictly I might be in love,” one fan enthused.

Many said Strictly bosses had “saved the best for last”, while one excited viewer said her performance left them “shaking”.