Learn more about Butterfly Ball
The Butterfly Ball is a concept album and subsequent live rock opera appearing in 1974 and 1975 respectively, based on the children's book The Butterfly Ball and the Grasshopper Feast. The album is officially titled the same as this poem, but is more commonly shortened to the Butterfly Ball to distinguish it.
It was originally conceived as a solo vehicle for Jon Lord and to be produced by Roger Glover, but Lord proved too busy with Deep Purple and Glover took up the reins on his own. Using his connections, Glover recruited a large cast of noted rock musicians to perform on it, with a different vocalist for each track. The single Love is All, with vocals from Ronnie James Dio, charted in the UK. The song has been used recently by the Dutch political party CDA in its election ads for the 2006 Dutch General Election.
On October 16th 1975, a one-off performance at the Royal Albert Hall took place. Again it had a star-studded cast of rock musicians, most notably Ian Gillan who was drafted in at the last minute and received a standing ovation on his entrance. He replaced an unavailable Ronnie James Dio who had commitments with Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow (although Dio did eventually get to perform the song at the Royal Albert Hall in 1999 as the guest of Deep Purple). Gillan had not performed since leaving Deep Purple in 1973. Also notable was the appearance of Vincent Price as narrator.