Keiko Kitagawa interview article in “Biteki” May 2016 issue (English translation)

Keiko Kitagawa: Soft, flexible. Her new appeal.

Cool beauty. We’re saying it now and we’ve said it many times before about Ms. Keiko Kitagawa. However, nowadays better words to describe her are “soft” and “flexible”. After announcing her upcoming marriage earlier this year, you can feel happiness beaming from her, making everyone around her smile with infectious happiness. We can’t look away from the brilliant shine!!

Although it’s been a while, she’s finally back in a big way!

“I like cooking from scratch. Because you get to be involved in the whole process.”

If you think famous people have to be beautiful both at home and in public, Keiko Kitagawa wants you to think again.

“Even now, I still really have fun at work. Even though I get to portray a ton of different roles, I need to be able to live with who I really am on my own. Even though I’m always busy, I make an effort not to lose sight of who I am. I, Keiko Kitagawa, love cooking. Lately my favorite dish is stewed hamburger. I love sprinkling seasonings over the meat, and watching it stew. I love any kind of cooking that takes serious time and effort. And of course, making sure that you’re careful with seasonings is important too. But if you follow the process, you can make anything to your own taste and that’s best of all.”

On the flip side – “I’m absolutely making an effort not to be over-diligent with my career. I’m learning to become comfortable with that. But honestly, I still feel funny about doing that. I’m the type who sees things in black and white, and I don’t like being unclear about what I mean. So sitting with that discomfort, it’s difficult. (laughs)”

She’s the kind who definitely cares about making other people feel at home and comfortable. During this interview, I could feel Ms. Kitagawa’s efforts to create a comfortable ambiance. She says, “I sound just like a Kansai redneck!” whenever she breaks into an uncontrollable giggle.

“I really believe that the point of living is to be happy. Although there are periods of light and shadow in all of our lives, I don’t want to be bothered by the ups and the downs. I want to be happy, even in the face of hard times. Because I know I can withstand them, and the return on my gritting and bearing it will be huge!”

And it’s not only me that she makes comfortable, it’s her family too. “That’s who Keiko Kitagawa is”

She takes her smart phone from her bag. “I used to hate this”, she says, revealing its pink hue. “This is the first time I’ve ever bought a pink one too.” She laughs. Even though I expected her to laugh and smile, I didn’t think she’d say she hated anything. She’s always laughing, her teeth bare, an infectious glow all around her whenever she speaks.

“Lately people have told me that I’m glowing. But then I tell them that the reason is because I’m about to turn 30 years old”, she explained. “As I’ve gotten older, I’ve stopped caring as much about what other people think. I do things because I want to, without worrying about the rest. I try to be the best Keiko Kitagawa I can be”. She said this simply, looking straight at me while she explained her stance.

“At work, I try to be the best Keiko Kitagawa I can be. Even when it’s hard, after all the time I’ve spent struggling I deserve to be able to be myself. At this point in my life, I want to raise a family. I want to grow even closer with my family. And I want to do my best for them, even more than ever. Spending this spring working for Kosé has been like a muse to me. There’s a new photo shoot that I’ll be in soon. And I’m sure that no matter how things change, I’m going to remain a force unto myself and keep going. Everyone has that fight or flight response when they’re attacked. And until you’re faced with that kind of situation, and you’re alone, you don’t know which response you’ll have until you’re challenged. I know that I’m going to keep fighting. And I want my focus to be on portraying wives and motherly roles in my future works. And I want to be a femme fatale, too!”

As she speaks, my thoughts drift into my feelings. Her soft smile and warm presence makes everything feel relaxed. And as the conversation continues I grow more and more attracted to Ms. Kitagawa.

Even if she doesn’t like something she smiles. And she’s in the mood to fight, now more than ever.

(“Biteki” means “the goal of beauty”. Article translation by Fandom Services, paid for by this blog to the benefit of all English-speaking and English-learning Keiko fans.)

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