Bob Dylan sends acceptance speech to be read at Stockholm Nobel ceremony

Marcy Oster

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan onstage during the 2015 MusiCares Person of The Year honoring him held at Los Angeles Convention Center, Febr. 6, 2015. (Michael Tran/FilmMagic)

(JTA) — American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan will send a speech to be read in Stockholm, where the Nobel Prizes will be awarded.

The Nobel Foundation announced that Dylan’s acceptance speech will be read aloud at the Nobel banquet, which will be held on Dec. 10, the same day that the prizes will be awarded.  One prize winner per category traditionally gives an acceptance speech at the banquet.

The speech does not absolve Dylan of the requirement to deliver a Nobel lecture in order to receive the $927,740 prize. The lecture must be given within six months starting from Dec. 10, and can be given at the place of Dylan’s choosing.

In one of the musical interludes during the prize ceremony, Patti Smith will perform Dylan’s “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall,” in an arrangement for the Royal Philharmonic by Hans Ek.

Last month Dylan told the Academy in a letter that he would be unable to travel to Stockholm on Dec. 10 to receive his Nobel Prize, citing “pre-existing commitments.”

In a statement published last month on its website, the Swedish Academy said that:  “There is a chance that Bob Dylan will be performing in Stockholm next year, possibly in the spring, in which case he will have a perfect opportunity to deliver his lecture.”

Dylan’s prize was announced on Oct. 13 “for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition.” The academy later said that after five days of trying to contact Dylan to personally inform him of the award, it had given up. He acknowledged the prize two weeks later.

Born Robert Allen Zimmerman and raised Jewish in Minnesota, Dylan wrote some of the most influential and well-known songs of the 1960s. His hits include “Blowin’ in the Wind,” “Like a Rolling Stone” and “Times They Are a-Changin’.”

Dylan, 75, is the first artist seen primarily as a songwriter to win the award, a fact that has stirred debate in literary circles.

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