|Princess' pupils start school|
| [30.08.2007, 11:56pm, Thu. GMT]|
|Thursday was the first day of school for those who have paid NOK 12,000 in the hopes Princess Martha Louise can help teach them to contact angels. The princess' so-called "angel school," meanwhile, has now been charged with snitching its name from another small business Lillian Festvåg, a physiotherapist and researcher in the state health system, now feels pressured to change the name of her own business, because the name the princess and her partner chose for theirs is so similar, "and I neither can nor want to be associated with angels and princesses." Festvåg started her own small business nearly five years ago to handle her public speaking engagements. She registered her business as Astarte Lillian Festvåg with state authorities.In June, Festvåg received a call from Princess Martha Louise's business partner Elisabeth Samnøy. "She didn't mention the princess, only that they wanted to start a school named Astarte," Festvåg told newspaper Aftenposten. "Samnøy also wanted to buy my domain name (www.astarte.no). I said 'no' to this, and urged them to find another name for their operation.'" |
Festvåg claims Samnøy wasn't interested in discussing the matter. When news broke last month that Princess Martha Louise had emerged as a self-professed clairvoyant, and that she and Samnøy were launching Astarte Education to help students "create miracles in their lives with angels," Festvåg felt defeated.
"It's now impossible for me to keep my firm and domain names, even though I was first out with them," Festvåg said. Neither the princess nor Samnøy, which ultimately took the domain and firm name Astarte Education, could be reached for comment on their refusal to negotiate with Festvåg.
Among the princess' students starting at Astarte Education's school, meanwhile, is a 65-year-old woman from Lillehammer who told newspaper VG that she and all the others had to sign confidentiality agreements, regarding what they learn about other participants in the course.
Inger Middelthon doesn't see anything wrong with that, and said she looked forward to begin. She's a big fan of Princess Martha Louise, and admires how she's "stood upright" while controversy has swirled around her.
"Martha Louise is strong, warm, brave, has integrity and knows what she’s talking about," Middelthon told Aftenposten.no. "The criticism against her has been evil and below-the-belt."
She doesn't think Martha Louise should give up her royal title, to avoid conflicts of intererest, and she's delighted she was selected for admission to the princess' school. "I don’t know how the admissions process functioned, and thought I wouldn’t get in," she said.
"This is going to be very, very exciting," Middelthon added. "There are a lot of Norwegians who recognize other dimensions." She wants to meet them, and share experiences.
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