"Twilight has arrived too early," said Alexis. "It's all kicking off.
Alexis Kirke 'composing' the unique symphony
"It's got a mind of its own and my computer isn't obeying me. I didn't get much sleep last night, but I'm very excited."
At first, there were soft, little twinkly sounds as the light increased - you could see the sun emerging on a big screen on the wall.
Within 10 minutes, the sound was filling the foyer and after 30 minutes, the symphony reached a crescendo, with Alexis sitting at his laptop in the middle of the foyer, tweaking things for all he was worth.
"The sensors on the windows are driving these knobs on the computer here," he explained to his audience. "And the knobs are controlling the audio here."
People nodded, though whether they understood exactly what was happening is another matter.
The small gathering of people who had got up before dawn to witness it listened intently before breaking into spontaneous applause as the crescendo subsided.
"Oh, it's beautiful," said one of the 'audience,' Judy Willis, who is a member of the university choir.
Watching the sun come up on the screen
So how was it for the composer? "I am so pleased, it's gone really well.
"I love the sounds in here. I've been developing all this sound on my headphones or on small speakers and to hear all this sound now and see the sunlight is, wow!
"It was spooky at the start. I thought 'oh no, it's not going to work' - but it was just the sun doing its own thing."
A recording was made of this unique and stunning piece of music but Alexis said: "I don't know what the plans are for it.
"And we still have the Sunlight Symphony:Sunset to perform yet."
Sunlight Symphony:Sunrise launched the Peninsula Arts Continuum contemporary music festival at the university, which runs until 7 March 2010.
The Sunset element will close the festival - find out more using the links on this page.
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