S'pore to house Japanese girl idols' first overseas theatre

SINGAPORE - Japanese top idol girl group AKB48 will open their first overseas theatre here in Singapore.

The world's first AKB48 Cafe, as well as South-east Asia's first AKB48 official shop, will also be located in Singapore. This is part of the idol group's plan to develop a J-pop experiential project in Singapore.

The project will be housed at *SCAPE in Orchard Road.

A spokesperson for the group, Mr Yasushi Akimoto, said he wanted to bring idols and fans closer through interactions and live concerts and events.

"By locating AKB48's theme shop and cafe adjacent to the Live Hall, this will make them more accesible to Singaporeans.

"I hope that they can feel and enjoy AKB48 and better appreciate live concerts. It will be great if fans in Singapore can eventually identifty with and see AKB48 as their own idols someday," he said.

The live concerts, themed as "The Akihabara Experience", will let locals experience AKB48's "live concerts" on a regular basis starting from May 15 this year.

16 members of AKB48 and their sister groups will fly to Singapore for two days a month, with two concerts a day.

Each ticket will cost $50 and can be booked on their official website (www.akb48.com.sg) or purchased at the AKB48 official shop.

Fans or members of the public can purchase official AKB48 merchandise from the AKB48 Official Shop, which will be launched on May 14 at 1pm. Selected AKB48 members will be there to grace the opening.

Items that can be purchased include T-shirts, pen cases and photos.

Another part of the project will include the world's first AKB48 cafe where Japanese fusion food and desert will be made available for customers. There will also be screening of video clips and messages from AKB48 members.