Bob Dylan will finally accept his Nobel Prize in literature this weekend, but will receive the medal and diploma on his own terms: while he’s on the road in Europe.
Last year, the singer and songwriter famously declined to accept the award in person, citing prior engagements. On Wednesday, Swedish Academy representative Sara Danius issued a statement announcing Dylan will finally receive it during his weekend performances at the Stockholm Waterfront in Sweden.
“The good news is that the Swedish Academy and Bob Dylan have decided to meet this weekend. The academy will then hand over Dylan’s Nobel diploma and the Nobel medal, and congratulate him on the Nobel Prize in literature. The setting will be small and intimate, and no media will be present; only Bob Dylan and members of the academy will attend, all according to Dylan’s wishes.”
Also according to Dylan’s wishes, he will not deliver a customary lecture to the attendees. But, Danius wrote: “The academy has reason to believe that a taped version will be sent at a later point.”
The bestowal of the award will conclude a curious dance between Dylan and the academy. When his award for literature was announced in October, the artist didn’t acknowledge the honor for weeks, and then only did so casually, during a previously scheduled media interview.
For the December awards ceremony in Stockholm, Dylan’s acceptance speech was read aloud by Azita Raji, then the U.S. ambassador to Sweden, and was followed by Patti Smith’s emotional performance of Dylan’s “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall.”
In his speech, Dylan wrote:
“If someone had ever told me that I had the slightest chance of winning the Nobel Prize, I would have to think that I’d have about the same odds as standing on the moon. In fact, during the year I was born and for a few years after, there wasn’t anyone in the world who was considered good enough to win this Nobel Prize. So, I recognize that I am in very rare company, to say the least.”
Even rarer, though, is the laureate who gets his award hand-delivered.