In the video for her new single, “Right There,” Ariana Grande filters Romeo and Juliet through the campy lens of a late-Nineties teenage rom-com. Directed by the Young Astronauts (who also helmed the clip for Grande’s “Almost Is Never Enough”), the clip stars Grande stars as “Juliet” opposite her suave “Romeo” love interest, Patrick Schwarzenegger.
As in the Shakespeare story, the pair meet at a masquerade party and eventually fall in love. But, since this is a pop music video, there’s also plenty of camp: Throughout, Grande fans herself on a frilly Victorian bed, strikes sassy poses and even ventures into a massive swimming pool for a late-night make-out session. Big Sean, who contributes a guest verse to the track, also shows up, though he’s mainly relegated to the sidelines, playing the role of “The Priest.”
“How can this be wrong when it feels so right?,” Grande sings on the track, channeling the sweetness (and melodic content) of Mariah Carey’s “Always Be My Baby,” backed by skittering programmed snares and piano. With her high vocal range, Grande has garnered Carey comparisons before, and she told Rolling Stone recently that she counts them as “a blessing.”
“When you look at ‘The Way,’ it’s obvious, but I’m not worried about it,” she said. “It’s a massive compliment; she’s the greatest singer in the world, like literally, the Guinness Book of World Records. It’s an incredible compliment but it doesn’t worry me, because when you listen to my album as a whole, you get to know me.”
Grande’s debut, Yours Truly, came out in August, but she’s already working on her follow-up. In the same interview, the singer gave a preview of thenext album, which she hopes will be “a little bit different.”
“I don’t want it to sound like an extension of Yours Truly,” she said. “I want it to sound like an evolution. I want to explore more sounds and experiment a little bit. I have a bunch of ideas I’m very excited about and a lot of stuff cooking.”