Thursday 4 September 2008

Mary & Frederik in Sydney with Christian & Isabella

Today Crown Prince Frederik, Crown Princess Mary, Prince Christian and Princess Isabella were at Government House located in Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens for a press call during their current Australian visit. The visit has been mostly private for the family to visit Mary's side of the family and their Australian friends. It has included several official events (more coming soon!) and this press call, which is said to have been arranged in exchange for peace from photographers for the remainder of their visit. The media in Australia has reported they are thought to be returning to Denmark in a few days. Christian wondered if there were sharks in the Government House pond, perhaps inspired by his visit to Oceanworld yesterday. And so, Christian constantly escaped to do his own thing, while Isabella, still limited to a crawl, was easier to catch! Isabella charmed the Danish press in particular when she responded to a farewell "Hej" (see you) by speaking unprompted to the media for the first time. "Hej, hej" she said, with lots of farewell waving. The Danish media understood the significance of the moment!

Notice Bella's Kate Winslet/Titanic moment above! Photos © Daylife/AFP/GettyImages, Gaye Gerard/Getty Images, Sydney Morning Herald/Bob Pearce

An interesting editorial this week from Billed Bladet's Editor-in-Chief Annemette Krakau: Sandheden om Marys ”skideballe” 3 september 2008. It is in response to some earlier inaccurate reports in the Australian and Danish press (links later in catch up posts).

Annemette Krakau: The truth about Mary's ”dressing down”

The headlines have thundered about Mary’s rage towards the press – Read the complete and true story here.

Last week the headlines thundered about how an angry Crown Princess Mary had shown the Danish press the door in Tasmania in connection with the Crown Prince Couple’s visit to zoo/wildlife park. Mary was called “furious”, “snobbish” and a lot more from the bag of words that triggers frowns and lots of letters to the editor.

The true story from Tasmania is very different.

The truth is that Mary is both professional and cooperative and that the tone/mood between her and us is really good. When the Crown Prince Couple and their children were to visit the animal park, the journalist and photographer from
Billed Bladet lined up outside the gate. When Mary passed we asked whether we could take some pictures inside the park. And Mary answered quite calmly that she dearly wished for a private moment with her Australian family and she asked whether we would please respect that. Which we did. The message was only delivered in Danish, because we were the only ones who asked for permission. The [non-Danish] foreign press was already inside the park and were photographing away. In order to calm the situation down the Crown Prince Couple agreed – under heavy pressure – to line up for some pictures.

After the visit the journalist and photographer from
Billed Bladet were of course disappointed about missing a good shot inside the park, but we had kept our agreement, our promise, which Mary knew. She went into action and arranged for her private pictures from the visit to be at the disposal of Billed Bladet (these pictures are published in Billed Bladet this week) and a team of Danish colleagues.

Mary could have been indifferent. She could have shrugged her shoulders and acted “furious” or “snobbish”, as it was written that she did. But the future queen of Denmark was anything but that. We are fond of having Mary’s pictures, but we are even fonder of the truth.

Yours sincerely
Annemette Krakau, Editor-in-chief.

Professor Marie Bashir - Governor of New South Wales, who phoned Mary when on a visit to Copenhagen last year and she was promptly invited to lunch at Fredensborg. The Governor has a wonderful record on a wide range of children's issues.
Government House, Sydney

The Sydney Morning Herald 'Quite contrary is Mary's Christian'
The Australian 'Danish Royals visit Sydney's Government House'
The Age (Melbourne) 'Princess Mary shows off family in Sydney'
The Daily Telegraph 'Princess Mary tells all about her Australian trip'

The Daily Telegraph 'Princess fantasy is much better than a Paris Hilton fallacy'
(This is an opinion piece by Naomi Toy on the Opinion page in today's Telegraph)

The Sydney Morning Herald photo gallery
The Manly Daily photo gallery - these photos were taken yesterday afternoon between two events during the day and the evening. The man and little girl with them is Chris Meehan and his daughter. He is married to a Dane and fellow sailor, Michaela, both friends of Mary and Frederik. Chris is Mary's former boss at Belle Property where Mary was part of the management team and the sales director (as in she was not a real estate agent!). The nanny also took Christian and Isabella to Oceanworld photo gallery 'Mary Donaldson: Vacaciones ne familia en su Australia natal'
National Nine News gallery
The Daily Telegraph photo gallery

Nine.msn video clip (02:06) video clip
Seven News clip (01:08)
Nine News clip (02:06) - includes an interview with Billed Bladet's Anna Johannesen
Seven News clip (01:27)

Thanks Muhler!
* Just a note for royalty watchers: The Australian media tends not make the distinction between 'crown princess' and 'princess'. No doubt they are accustomed to the British royals who of course don't use the crown prince title for the Prince of Wales (who is the crown prince neverthless) ...

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