Bob Dylan has said that he will not be going to Stockholm to pick up his 2016 Nobel Prize for literature.
Bob told the Swedish Academy that “he wishes he could receive the prize personally, but other commitments make it unfortunately impossible” to attend the December 10 ceremony.
The 75-year-old American singer-songwriter was awarded the prize on October 13 “for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition”.
However, the Academy said they are still expecting Bob to give the Nobel Lecture in a statement.
They said: “We are looking forward to Bob Dylan’s Nobel lecture, which he must hold – according to the requirements, within six months from December 10.”
The literature prize and five other Nobel Prizes will be officially conferred upon winners in Stockholm next month on the anniversary of award founder Alfred Nobel’s death in 1896.
The Academy said it “respects Bob Dylan’s decision”, adding that not travelling to the Swedish capital to personally pick up the prestigious award was “unusual, but not exceptional”.
Literature laureates have skipped the ceremony before. In 2004, Austrian playwright and novelist Elfriede Jelinek stayed home, citing a social phobia.
“The award is still theirs, as it now belongs to Bob Dylan,” the Academy said.