One of Brahms' lesser known works, the Serenade No. 2 is a charming orchestral work that is notable for its absence of violins. The combination of winds, brass, and low strings give this piece a more subdued quality although the Scherzo (Mvt. II) is quite energetic. Brahms' two serenades are his first orchestral attempts (he primarily wrote for the piano and chamber ensembles) and they foreshadow the great orchestral works that were to come much later in his life.