Last month, when we learned that Bob Dylan had been given the Nobel Prize for Literature, it was a big deal. But Bob Dylan didn’t treat it like a big deal. For a few weeks, he did nothing to acknowledge the fact that he’d won the Prize or to indicate that maybe he’d bother showing up in Stockholm to accept it. Eventually, he commented, in an interview with The Telegraph, that the award had left him “speechless” and that he’d attend the ceremony to accept his prize “if it’s at all possible.” Apparently, it is not at all possible. Bob Dylan will not be there to accept his award.
According to the BBC News, the Swedish Academy, the body in charge of handing out the Nobel Prize, has confirmed that Dylan will not be on hand to accept it. The Academy claims that it got a “personal letter” from Dylan, who claimed that he was “very honored” but that he’d have to pass up the ceremony because of “pre-existing commitments.” Dylan doesn’t have any concerts scheduled for next month. Maybe he’s got a dentist’s appointment or something.
For Dylan to accept the Prize, he’ll have to give a Nobel Lecture sometime between now and June. The Prize, if he does accept it, includes about $900,000 in cash — not pocket change, even if you are Bob Dylan.