Watch Juliet Doherty Use Ballet to Bring a Cartoon Character to Life

January 11, 2018

It’s finally the weekend, and we’re celebrating the best way we know how—a new ballet video. Juliet Doherty (who trained with San Francisco Ballet and Master Ballet Academy, and is set to star in the dance film, On Pointe), teamed up with Cartoon Network for her latest project.

“Cartoon Network contacted me about their show, Steven Universe, which was coming out with a new vinyl album of the soundtrack of the show,” Doherty shared with Pointe. “They told me about one of the show’s main characters named, Pearl, who is a strong-willed character but has the grace inspired by a ballerina.”

Becoming the real-life version of Pearl, Doherty choreographed a dance to one of the songs from the show. “I choreographed the piece in my kitchen in about 30 minutes! My goal was to achieve a balance of her vulnerability without losing her beautiful, strong “warrior” quality,” Doherty explained. “Anthony and Tati Vogt (producer and director of my soon-to-be-released film, On Pointe) met me in my hometown of Albuquerque, NM. The video was shot by our amazing cinematographer, Aiden Chapperone, in one 12-hour day, and the editing was done by Tati and Anthony.”

Dressed just like the animated version of Pearl in a light blue leotard and skirt combo with cut-off yellow tights and pink leg warmers, Doherty shows off her technique with sky-high extensions and an impressive piqué turn sequence at the 1:15 mark.

In the cartoon, Pearl is one of the three Crystal Gems (Pearl, Garnet and Amethyst), who use their magical powers to protect the world. The cartoon version of Pearl is described as a perfectionist, so it only seems fitting that the Cartoon Network chose Doherty and her practically-perfect dancing to represent the character.

Watch the full video, and check out more of Juliet’s dance clips on her swoon-worthy Instagram page.