Though widely known in the West, St. Joan of Arc is an obscure historical figure for many people in Japan. Maki Horikita, who portrays the 15th-century French war heroine in the upcoming TBS stage production “Jeanne d’Arc,” rises to the challenge of making Joan’s tragic life story relevant for a Japanese audience. It is also the first-ever stage performance for Horikita, who, at 22, is one of the few young actresses in Japan with a solid reputation for her craft.

“I have received feedback from people who have seen my work in the past, but I’ve never acted right in front of an audience, or felt people’s reaction on the spot,” Horikita tells The Japan Times. “I look forward to (performing on stage) very much.”

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