THE Ashmolean Museum is no stranger to treasures.

Among the startling displays in this world-class institution’s galleries are precious items from the four corners of the world.

But tomorrow, Oxford’s – and indeed Britain’s – oldest public museum will, for the first time, play host to new musical treasures in the cool setting of its vault.

The key exhibit of the Ashmolean Late Night event will be Oxford band Trophy Wife, pictured, a stalwart of the city’s Blessing Force music scene. They will be joined by the singer-songwriter Kyla La Grange.

Keeping things going into the small hours will be DJ sets from MIM (Black Cab Sessions), Rita Maia (Talking at Me/Badmood) and Black Discs – aka Age Salajoe and Eliot Sumner – who just happens to be the daughter of Sting.

The vault session is being staged by Notting Hill Arts Club, one of the capital’s hippest venues, and the destination of choice of clued-up gig-goers and London’s best up-and-coming artists. One of the curators is Oxford’s own Autumn Neagle, who told us why tomorrow would be one of the hottest nights of the summer.

“This is the first time this world famous museum has done anything quite like this,” said the promoter, who is also festival producer for Cowley Road Carnival’s Fiesta in the Park.

“The Ashmolean is Britain’s oldest museum and as part of Oxford University holds a position as one of the most important collections in the country.

“The original building was built in 1683 and as such has great presence and atmosphere, and was recently given new life with the addition of a stunning new wing and a rooftop restaurant. Now this beautiful building will show it is also the city’s sexiest music venue, by hosting some amazing artists and DJs.”

The night will see the museum reopen its doors at 6.30pm, and the public invited to view its main collection for free – but with the Oxford Playhouse also curating a live Pots and Plays performance of music, song and dance in the galleries.

The rooftop restaurant will become a DJ bar, and visitors will be able to view the Heracles to Alexander The Great show of treasures from the ancient kingdom of Macedon – tipped as the exhibition of the summer.

Then at 10pm the doors to the vault will be opened for a night of live bands and DJs.

“This is the perfect blend of culture, art, history and music,” says Autumn, who has previously programmed music for evening events at the V&A Museum of Childhood, in London.

“As a visitor to the Ashmolean for many years, both as an art student at Oxford Brookes University, and in later years whiling away rainy afternoons discovering treasures and enjoying the exhibitions, I am delighted to be putting on this first event, shaking up this great institution with a contemporary night, mixing music and the arts.

“In these difficult times, many of our great arts institutions across the country have been finding new ways to appeal to a contemporary audience and engage them with the arts – and what better way to show them off to the world than to host a party in such grand surroundings.”

* Tickets for the show at the Ashmolean Museum in Beaumont Street, tomorrow are £10, from