Eric Benet Didn’t Know His Wife Was Prince’s Ex-Wife For Months And Shares How He Found Out
The day Halle Berry’s R&B ex-husband linked up with the ex-wife of the iconic Prince, it was a stroke of fate. They met at a Los Angeles bar and Eric Benet instantly ‘fell in love’ with the woman who seems to have a giving heart. When Eric began dating his now-wife, Manuela Testolini, he thought he’d found his soulmate, which apparently he did. However, what he later learned, was that he’d also found something of a treasure in Manuela, after eventually learning the music icon he idolized was her ex-husband.
Eric has been married to Manuela for 11 years (since 2011). Their wedding came six years after Eric and Halle divorced in 2005; and 5 years after Manuela and Prince divorced in 2006.
How Eric Benet Found Out His Wife Was Prince’s Ex-Wife
It’s unclear exactly what year Manuela and Eric began kickin’ it, but we do know it was during Manuela’s divorce proceedings from her then-hubby, Prince. Eric Benet confirmed this in a prior interview on Van Lathan’s “The Red Pill” podcast. Turns out, he also had no clue who exactly he was dating for at least the first two months of his relationship with Manuela:
Via Yahoo- “We’re seeing each other for, like, a couple of months and during those couple of months she’s telling me that she’s going through a divorce…,” [Eric Benet] said, explaining he realized this was no ordinary split and there was a lot of money at stake.
“Her name is Testolini, so for some reason I thought she was married to some Italian (guy)… I was driving her to the airport… and she gave me some other details and finally I was like, ‘Who is this guy…?’ and so she just kind of laughed and said, ‘Prince’. I was like, ‘Prince who…?’ By that time we were already like (an item).”
Benet Admits He Couldn’t Measure Up To Prince
Via Yahoo- The fact he was dating Prince’s ex made Eric step up his dating game, adding, “Usually, if I’m dating somebody and I invite her to the studio, it’s like, that’s a thing… It’s like, ‘Wow, I get to see how you create and this is so fascinating’. And then once I found out it was Prince, I was like, ‘I ain’t s**t, man…!’. My studio is (small).”
What Happened When Prince Put Benet On The Spot
As if it wasn’t already pressure enough for the brotha to try to come behind Prince in the dating department, Eric Benet revealed how nervous he was when Prince put him on the spot during their first meeting. In fact, from what the R&B crooner described to Lathan, he was damn near like a dear caught in headlights at that moment.
You see, Eric Benet was just getting his career poppin’ when he met Prince at his concert. Prince was headlining the show and Benet was in the audience, soakin’ up the greatness of the icon who stood before the crowd. In the midst of performing, Prince apparently recognized Benet and called him up on stage. Here’s what happened next though:
Via Music News- “Prince saw me in the audience and told me to get up…,” he recalled. “I kick myself about this… but when you respect somebody (like that), when he pulled me onstage I was blown away… He was doing some jam…”
And when the headliner [Prince] handed Eric the microphone, the young star just freaked out and screamed.
“He said, ‘The next time I invite you onstage you better sing’,” Benet laughed, adding, “Any musician out there now owes a debt to Prince… We’re all standing on the shoulders of that guy.”
Must be a cool feeling for that ‘Prince moment’ to come full circle for Eric Benet. He and his wife now have two beautiful young girls together, and Eric has an older daughter from a prior marriage. Manuela still works with her late ex-husband, Prince’s, philanthropic foundations to this day. She has also built a school in Africa under his name.