Unusual instrumentations were by no means the exception in the chamber music works of Bohuslav Martinu, most notably the works he wrote in Paris in the 1920s and 1930s being characterised by his experimentation with sound and form. It is from this periodthat four short serenades also originate, of which the Serenade No. 1 was composed in 1932. The serenades were published by the Prague publishing house of Melantrich in 1949.
Although the study score of the Serenade No. 1 was published while the composer was still alive, he was in fact not involved in preparing this edition; indeed, the performance material also appeared in print without his participation in 1954. It was therefore decided to use the autograph score as the principal source for this edition. -the publisher