AKB48 will be holding the 41st single senbatsu sousenkyo(election event) this June 6th at the Yahoo! Dome in Fukuoka. This election event will determine the main members for the 41st single via fan votes. Other than the main members for the single, the coupling songs members will also be determined by the fan votes. As with the format last year, a total of 80 members will be elected for the 41st single set to be released in August 2015.
This will be the 7th election event to be held and as with the past 2 election events, members will have to apply for the their own candidacy. Members eligible for the coming election event are current active members in AKB48, SKE48, NMB48, HKT48 as of 20th March 2015. The 2 former AKB48 members who were transferred to JKT48, Nakagawa Haruka and Chikano Rina are eligible as well. The candidacy application will start on the 25th March 1600 hours Japan time and will close on the 29th March 2200 hours Japan time.
The breakdown of the 80 elected members for the 41st single are as follows.
Rank 1-16: Single senbatsu members
Rank 17-32: Undergirls
Rank 33-48: Next Girls
Rank 49-64: Future Girls
Rank 65-80: Up-and-coming girls.
As for the main event itself, official word on why the change in venue to Fukuoka from the usual Kanto based venues were a combination of possible bad weather and the noise levels when the event goes into the night. Thus, the decision to hold the upcoming election event indoors. And after checking the various schedule of the possible venues available, the Yahoo! Dome in Fukuoka was selected. The previous 2 events were held outdoors at Nissan Stadium and Ajinamoto Stadium.
As for the voting process, as far as we, the overseas fans are concerned, the easiest way to participate in the voting process will be via the voting serial number given with each 40th single purchased. The voting period will be opened from 19th May 2015 1000 hours Japan time to 5th June 1500 hours Japan time. A quick report on the vote count will be announced on the 20th May 2015.