The judges' scores from Monday's final round of competition put Osmond and his partner, Kym Johnson, in second place — behind Mya and ahead of Kelly Osbourne. The previous two weeks, Osmond was last when the scores from judges Len Goodman, Carrie Ann Inaba and Bruno Tonioli were totaled.
But viewers votes (which count 50 percent) made the difference.
"They pulled us through," Osmond said.
On Monday, the judges gave Osmond and Johnson's 85 points, just two behind Mya and Dmitry Chaplin. Kelly Osbourne and Louis van Amstel trail with 76.
At 51, he's not exactly elderly, but the subject of Osmond's age came up several times in Monday' program.
"I may be 20 years older than some of my competition, but tonight I'm going to show them that I'm still in my prime," he said. (Mya is 30; Osbourne is 25.)
First Osmond and Johnson impressed the judges with their cha-cha. "Donny Osmond — where did those hips come from?" Inaba asked.
Then he got high praise when the three pairs performed the same choreography side-by-side.