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Matthias Heyman
Information Discography Concerts schedule
Instrument(s) Double bass
Date of birth February 3, 1983
Place of birth Louvain
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Matthias Heyman studied classical double bass at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels under Frank Coppieters. As a student he played in symphonic orchestras under the direction of Philippe Herreweghe, Barthold Kuijcken and Reinbert De Leeuw, and in concert halls such as Bozar in Brussels and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam (NL).

He continued his studies at the Jazz department under Bart De Nolf before moving to the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp to study under Piet Verbist and Nic Thys. Here he graduated with distinction in 2009 (M.A.), and received his teacher's diploma with great distinction the same year. Matt also followed masterclasses with Hein van de Geyn, Eddie Gomez and Ron Carter, among others.

He played for three years (2008-2011) in the Youth Jazz Orchestra and was active as a freelance sideman in bands such as Royal Roost, the Tango Meets Jazz Project, and They Came Out of the Woods. He also gained experience with Frank Vaganée, Jef Neve, Bart Van Caeneghem, Kurt Van Herck, etc. He was a founding members of Monk by Four, a Thelonious Monk tribute group, and the trio Sullivan Street Trio, with whom he has won Fourth Prize in the 2011 edition of the Jazz Hoeilaart International Contest (now: B-Jazz International Contest).

In recent years, Matt shifted his activities to that of educator and researcher. He has taught double bass and ensemble for several years now at the Music Academy of Herentals, and is the lecturer of Jazz History at the Jazzstudio in Antwerp (since 2009) and at the LUCA School of Arts (formerly: Lemmensinstituut) in Leuven (since 2011). In 2011 Matt was also active as a field researcher for Resonant vzw in Leuven, in which he researched the cultural heritage of the Belgian Jazz History. In 2016–2017, he worked as a lecturer at the University of Amsterdam and the Conservatory of Amsterdam.

Besides his interest in Belgian jazz history, he specializes in jazz history, and is worldwide one of the leading experts on the history of jazz bass playing. Between 2012 and 20117, Matt pursued a doctoral research at the University of Antwerp in affiliation with the AP University College (at the Royal Antwerp Conservatoire). In this project, he contextualized the life and work of jazz double bassist Jimmie Blanton (1918–1942). Matt is the first PhD specializing in jazz history and culture in Belgium. Starting 2018, he works on a post-doctoral research project at the AP University College focusing on the artistic and educational importance of the Jazz Hoeilaart/B-Jazz International Contest between 1979 and 2019.
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