Matthias Heyman


Foto ID

Over Matthias Heyman


Welcome to my personal page at the University of Antwerp.

I am a doctoral candidate working on a PhD in the Arts at the University of Antwerp (Media, Policy & Culture Group) in affiliation with the AP University College (Royal Antwerp Conservatoire). My research team comprises prof. dr. Alexander Dhoest (UA) as promotor, dr. Eugeen Schreurs (AP) as co-promotor,  and bassist Piet Verbist (AP) and prof. dr. Lewis Porter (Rutgers University, USA) as advisors.

My research topic is a contextualization of the bass playing of jazz musician and Ellingtonian Jimmie Blanton (1918-1942). I state that Blanton is a typical case of so-called 'artistic heroism', and thus needs reevaluation. Most references describe Blanton as the 'revolutionary' bassist who modernized jazz bass playing. However, little in-depth research, both academic and artistic, has been done to support this (and similar) statement(s). Also his body of work, both in the context of soloing as accompanying, has hardly been put in perspective with that of his precursors and contemporaries, emphasizing his status as a lone, 'mythical' pioneer. I hope my research will shed new light on the bass playing of Blanton, his colleagues, and the evolution of jazz bass playing in the forties.

Besides my research activities, I am a sessional lecturer of Jazz History and Research Methodology at LUCA School of Arts (department of Music and Drama) in Leuven, and I also teach at the Jazzstudio in Antwerp. I regularly also give lectures for non-musicians on jazz history or related topics, for instance for Davidsfonds Academie and JazzClass Series vzw.

And last-but-not-least I am a freelance jazz bassist , so when I am not talking or writing I am playing!

You can also find me on AcademiaLinkedInJazz in Belgium and Muziekcentrum.

Research interests : jazz history, jazz bass playing, Jimmie Blanton, New Jazz Studies, and the rich but oft-forgotten Belgian jazz history!

Statuut & functies

Bijzonder academisch personeel
  • opvangmandaat postdoc FWO


Sint-Jacobstraat 2
2000 Antwerpen