Bob Dylan silent on Nobel win

This file photo taken on May 29, 2012 shows US President Barack Obama (R) presenting the Presidential Medal of Freedom to US musician Bob Dylan in the East Room of the White House in Washington.
PHOTO: AFP

STOCKHOLM - Twenty-four hours after awarding Bob Dylan the Nobel prize for literature, the Swedish Academy said on Friday (Oct 14) they had still not managed to speak to the reclusive US singer."The Academy has spoken to Dylan's agent and his tour manager," the Academy's chancellor Odd Zschiedrich told Agence France-Presse.

But as yet, they have not spoken directly to Dylan himself, he said.

The new poet laureate of rock'n'roll played to a packed house in Las Vegas on Thursday (Oct 13) night, hours after seeing off favourites including Britain's Salman Rushdie to become the first American to win the literature Nobel since Toni Morrison in 1993.

But fans hoping for a gushing response to the win were disappointed - true to his usual taciturn form, Dylan uttered not a word between songs, leaving the world to keep guessing what he thought about his elevation to the pantheon of literature.

According to the Washington Post, which contacted people close to the 75-year-old star: "Dylan remained silent throughout the day about the award".

One of his friends, singer Bob Neuwirth, told the Post: "He may not even acknowledge it." Each year, Nobel laureates are invited to Stockholm on December 10 to receive their award from the Swedish king and give a speech at a banquet.

But for the moment, the Academy does not know whether Dylan plans to come or not.

In 1964, the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre refused the literature prize as soon as he was told he had won it, rejecting the 273,000 kronor prize awarded at the time.

In 2016, Dylan stands to claim eight million kronor (S$1.29 million).

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