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How Josh Alfred Got Rejected Three Times in One Night by the Judges

Josh Alfred came to the AGT stage three separate times to showcase his speed reading, magic, and rapping skills

By Jax Miller

America’s Got Talent prides itself on giving a platform to some of the world’s most talented Acts and, sometimes, for some of the world’s most memorable rejections.

What happened during Josh Alfred's AGT audition?

How to Watch

Watch America’s Got Talent Tuesdays at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock

AGT Judges had a “good feeling” when 32-year-old Nigerian Josh Alfred came onstage, eliciting applause when shouting how happy he was to be on America’s Got Talent. For his Act, Alfred promised to do “something different” that the Judges had never seen before.

“In the twinkle of an eye, I can read so many pages,” Alfred explained.

RELATED: A List of All The Times Simon Cowell Pressed the Golden Buzzer On America's Got Talent

For his speed-reading act, Alfred flipped through three books, muttering unintelligibly through each one. Sofia Vergara was the first to press on the red X, with Simon Cowell calling the performance “pointless.”

It was too bad for Alfred, who joked he hoped to spend his $1 million winnings on books. Alfred then invited the Judges to quiz him on what he’d just read, and when Howie Mandel asked about the ending in Romeo and Juliet, he hilariously answered, “I guess they died or something.”

Alfred got four no votes, but he wasn’t quite finished. Later in the August 8, 2023 episode — after other Acts auditioned onstage — Alfred returned, this time wearing a wig and introducing himself as J-OSH, “the fastest rapper in the world.”

Josh Alfred performs on the AGT stage

“He snuck back in,” Heidi Klum told the other Judges.

Alfred delivered more incoherent words with his comedic rap. Vergara was once again the first to hit on the red X, and Klum followed suit.

“I was getting to the best part,” Alfred maintained. “I was about to kill it.”

Cowell laughed, and while the Judges said they couldn’t understand it, Alfred said he believed listeners who appreciated “fast rap” could “slow it down in their minds.”

Leaving with another four no votes, the Judges thought they’d seen the last of Josh Alfred, but no.

Later, Alfred returned with a fake beard and purported to be the magician, Terrifying J. Of course, he was fooling no one. Bumbling onstage, he let playing cards fall from his hat, soon getting the red buzzer from Mandel.

Wanting to “connect” Mandel’s life to the cards, Terrifying J asked when his birth month was and promised to draw an 11 for November (note: standard playing cards don’t include 11). Mandel said, “That would be amazing,” though Alfred ultimately drew a 10.

Klum and Vergara hit their red buzzers nearly simultaneously. Cowell, however, clapped at the performance as audience members laughed along.

Who is Josh Alfred?

Alfred is neither a speed reader, nor the fastest rapper in the world, nor a magician. Instead, he is a comedian known as Josh2Funny, and a popular one, at that.

Josh Alfred performs on the AGT stage

Alfred has nearly 3 million followers on his Instagram page, and his YouTube channel has just under 40 million views. His skit as the world’s fastest reader went viral in 2022, making him an overnight sensation.

In 2020, Alfred told OkayAfrica that he began stand-up comedy at church but failed to find success in the medium.

“Then I started watching people’s posts on Instagram, and it was then I knew that this was a thing people were actually making money from,” Alfred told the outlet.

Alfred explained that in 2016, he garnered attention after he and a friend created a video where Alfred slapped the other while dressed as mothers.

“After that, I started doing funny covers of songs,” Alfred continued. “I did a cover of Rihanna’s ‘Work,’ and I think it was at that point that Nigeria really accepted me as an online comedian.”

More of Alfred’s characters include Mama Felicia and Tunde Tupac.

Did Josh Alfred pass his AGT audition?

Alfred followed his magic act by calling AGT Host Terry Crews onstage. Still in character as Terrifying J — and already getting rejections from Mandel, Klum, and Vergara — he told the Judges he would control Crews’ mind.

First, he instructed the Host to raise one hand and then the other and wave to the crowd. He then requested Crews smile, then frown, to which the Host obliged.

“I controlled his mind,” Terrifying J told the Judges.

Vergara called the performance “funny,” and Klum called Alfred “likable,” but they still voted against Alfred advancing in the AGT competition, much to the audience’s disapproval.

“Seriously, I’ve now got it,” Cowell said. “I think you are hilarious. I really, really like you. You’re really funny.”

Cowell voted yes for Alfred, but with three no votes, it wasn’t enough for Alfred to pass his audition. However, the performer got the audience to jump to their feet when reverting to J-OSH and giving another unintelligible rap.

“Do you have a second song?” Cowell joked.

If anything, Alfred’s persistence is something to be remembered.

Watch America’s Got Talent Tuesdays at 8/7c on NBC and the following day on Peacock.