Manuela Testolini seems to have a thing for musicians. Her first husband, Prince Rogers Nelson, was a multiple award-winning singer-songwriter, and instrumentalist. He is the person responsible for introducing her to a life of fame and whet her appetite for men who work in the music industry. In her next attempt at matrimony, she married Eric Benét, a songwriter, singer and an actor.
Manuela Testolini is not just known as the wife of celebrated musicians but also as a charity worker, having worked with a handful of nonprofit organisations, some of which she founded. She has also received some credits and awards for her numerous charity works around the world. While these charitable works make Manuela one of the positive contributors to our plane, it is her marriage to successful musicians that particularly stands out in the media space.
An Application For Charity Funds Put Manuela Testolini On The Same Path With Prince
Manuela Testolini’s first contact with the musician happened in her line of work as a philanthropist. She had been on the hunt for funding to help a women’s shelter. Manuela sent out several applications to philanthropic organisations to get money which would be used to run the shelter. The first reply to her applications was from Love 4 One Another, a charity organisation owned by Prince.
According to Testolini, the foundation’s quick response saved the day. Following this encounter, she started working with the foundation, doing different projects for them until 2000 when she joined the organisation as a full-time staff. Apparently, working together gave them more access to each other.
A year after she started working at Love 4 One Another, Testolini and Prince got married. He was her first husband but she was not his first wife as the musician had been married in the past to a dancer named Mayet Garcia. The ability to dance was something Manuela Testolini shared in common with his first wife.
The wedding ceremony was a private one and had only their closest friends and family members in attendance. Manuela Testolini is Canadian, and as a result of this, the couple spent a good part of their time together in Canada, in a Toronto residence.
They Divorced Five Years Into The Marriage
In 2005, the first crack in the relationships started showing publicly as the couple decided to separate. Reportedly, by the following year, in May, their divorce was finalised. During the proceedings, Testolini requested that Prince pay her about $42,500 per month as that was the amount she needed to keep up the lifestyle that he had introduced her to.
A report on the musician’s finances after his death revealed that the couple spent a lot of time in hotels and rented apartments -some of the hotels cost $15,000 for a night. They also had a personal chef, an assistant and hosted parties that cost up to $50,000.
Before their split, Manuela and Prince were ardent members of Jehovah’s Witness. It was reported that when their relationship started to fall apart, the couple sought counselling from the elders of their local church in New York.
But, the counselling did not yield much as the couple still got separated. None of them ever revealed the grounds for their separation. From all reports, both parties wanted the relationship to end amicably, and they were able to achieve that.
Although Manuela And Prince Had A Relatively Quiet Divorce, It Wasn’t Without Drama
Their marriage, from start to finish, may have existed entirely under media attention, but we have learned a few things since it ended. For instance, while for all intent and purposes, they had a quiet divorce, it was not without drama.
According to court documents unsealed in 2017, Prince locked Testolini out of their home in Chanhassen in May 2005. The documents also revealed that Prince cut off Manuela’s credit cards, boxed up some stuff and stowed them in his Paisley Park vault. He also reportedly destroyed the house.
And while the couple actually completed their divorce in October 2007, contrary to previous reports, Prince had yet to return Manuela’s belongings, two years after the divorced ended.
According to Testolini, Prince held on to several personal items, including a gold and diamond earring set, photographs, scrapbooks, and various jewellery, valued at $185,000. He also kept videos of the songs he had written for her, Gamillah and Another Girl.
Despite this dramatic divorce proceeding, Manuela has only had nothing but praise for her ex-husband, even after his death and she found love with another singer.
Her Second Husband Had No Idea She Married Prince
During her separation from Prince, Manuela Testolini began a relationship with Eric Benét who later spoke on finding out about her relationship with the music icon and how it was a shock to him. They had been dating for a month and while she always referred to her divorce, she never revealed who the ex-husband was. Meanwhile, he had assumed that her ex-husband was an Italian man because of her last name, Testolini.
Benét and Testolini met at a fashion show and started a relationship. He was enamoured by her and admired the work Manuela Testolini did in philanthropy. After a long courtship, the couple got married on July 31, 2011.
Testolini is not the only person in the marriage who has been married to an affluent person. Benét was previously married to actress Halle Berry. Their marriage ended around the same time Manuela Testolini’s did.
Manuela Testolini And Eric Benét’s Union Has Produced Two Children
After their wedding in July 2011, the couple had their first child, Lucia Benét, in that same year. Four years after, their second daughter Amoura Benét followed. During Manuela Testolini’s marriage to Prince, the two had no children. Amoura and Lucia are both ambassadors of Manuela’s charity organization.
At some point in their marriage, Testolini was also responsible for India Benét , her husband’s daughter. Benét had a daughter with his late girlfriend, Tami Marie Stauff. Unfortunately, Stauff died in an automobile accident. India has followed in her father’s footsteps and become a songwriter and singer.
She Has A Designer Scented Candles Company
Manuela Testolini is mostly in the news for her marriages to Eric Benet or the now-late Prince but being the wife of important men is not all she’s known for. She also comes up in news circles when there is a mention of the work she does as a philanthropist.
She has created several foundations and worked with quite a number of others in the capacity of a consultant. Free Arts Minnesota, The Young women’s Empowerment Network, Love 4 One Another, are some of the foundations she has collaborated with.
Testolini also produces a brand of designer scented candles, under her company Altru. She uses environment-friendly, as well as recyclable materials. She created the company to help finance her charitable efforts.
We do not know how much her company has earned her, but Manuela Testolini has continued her philanthropic works to date. She has built two schools in Malawi in Prince’s name and received the $6 million-mansion in Toronto and a Lexus car after their divorce.