The Alte Nikolaischule was founded in 1512 under the name «Schola Nicolaitana», as a «Burse» (a municipally-run school). Among its most famous pupils, from 1828 to 1830, was composer Richard Wagner. The premises were rented out to various institutions over the 19th and 20th centuries, with Leipzig University using the school on an interim basis from 1953. By the 1980s this cultural landmark was on the verge of falling into ruin. However, in 1990 the leasehold was transferred to the newly founded Kulturstiftung Leipzig (Leipzig Cultural Foundation) and its first president Kurt Masur, and the restoration was complete by 1994. The neoclassical Richard-Wagner-Aula (Richard Wagner Auditorium) was inaugurated in 2012, soon followed by the permanent exhibition The young Richard Wagner 1813–1834, to honour the composer’s 200th birthday. Today the Alte Nikolaischule houses Leipzig University’s Antiquities Museum, the Auditorium and the exhibition, as well as the Kulturstiftung Leipzig, making it an important cultural institution and a living landmark of Leipzig’s musical heritage.