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Bob Dylan superfan Fredrik Wikingsson has described his experience of being the sole audience member for Dylan’s special set at Philadelphia’s Academy of Music as a “flood of emotions” that had the 41-year-old Swedish TV personality on the verge of tears.
Wikingsson found himself alone before Dylan and his band as part of Swedish film series Experiment Ensam. The show is a social experiment of sorts, which places individuals in events normally reserved for small groups or large crowds.
In the episode featuring Dylan’s performance, Wikingsson said he wanted the show to feel like one of the best moments of his life, comparable to the birth of his children. “I’ve seen him live maybe 20 times,” said Wikingsson.”But this time, he might notice me. That’s just crazy.”
As show time draws near it’s clear to see that Wikingsson is almost overwhelmed by the opportunity of having Dylan play just for him. “It’s incredibly weird. I almost feel sick,” Wikingsson confessed, noting if Dylan were to somehow acknowledge him it would be life changing.
The episode shows Wikingsson sitting alone in the theatre for about 15 minutes before Dylan suddenly walks onstage, with his band, and opens up with a cover of Buddy Holly’s Heartbeat. For the unique set Dylan ditched his trend of only playing songs released in the last 15 years and covered artists such as Holly, Fats Domino, and Chuck Willis.
It’s quite moving to see the pure joy on Wikingsson’s face as his musical hero plays only metres away from him. Unsure how to show his appreciation Wikingsson eventually shouted out “you guys sound great!” causing Dylan to chuckle.
After the set Wikingsson thanked Dylan from his seat, to which the music icon responded, “You can come anytime.” Dylan is set to release Shadows in the Night, an album of Frank Sinatra re-interpretations, in February 2015. You can check out the full Experiment Ensam episode below.
Watch: Bob Dylan perform for one lucky fan @ Philadelphia’s Academy of Music