The 75-year-old has “other commitments” on his big day.
Bob Dylan has decided not to attend the Nobel Prize Ceremony in Stockholm on December 10 to pick up his Nobel Prize for Literature.
The Swedish Academy said Dylan notified them in a personal letter that “he wishes he could receive the prize personally, but other commitments make it unfortunately impossible.”
In a press release, the Academy said: “We look forward to Bob Dylan’s Nobel Lecture, which he must give – it is the only requirement – within six months counting from December 10, 2016.”
The Nobel body added that it was “unusual, to be sure, but not exceptional” for laureates to miss the ceremony, with Doris Lessing, Harold Pinter and Elfriede Jelinek among those who have chosen to stay home for various reasons. “The prize still belongs to them, just as it belongs to Bob Dylan,” the Academy said.
Dylan’s reluctance to bask in the glory of his win – which includes a check for over $920,000 – began in the days after the prize’s announcement, when he maintained a mysterious silence over his award for creating “new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.”
Several days later he appeared to have acknowledged the prize on his website, but the brief mention of his win was deleted within hours. Dylan finally got in contact with the Academy a week later, saying the prize had left him “speechless”.
Meanwhile, Martin Scorsese’s essential Dylan documentary No Direction Home has been given a 10th anniversary box set release.