How Brigitte and Emmanuel Macron's love affair blossomed

Inside Brigitte and Emmanuel Macron’s age-gap relationship: How the French president fell for the drama teacher 24 years his senior in 1993 – and 30 years later they’re as loved-up as ever!

  • The now French President was just 15-years-old when he met his wife Brigitte
  • READ MORE: Brigitte Macron reveals how she put off marrying Emmanuel to avoid ‘wrecking’ her children’s lives 

Emmanuel and Brigitte Macron’s paths first crossed at an exclusive high school in northern France. 

The now French President was just 15-years-old when he met Madame Auziere, a teacher who was 24 years his senior, at Lycee La Providence in Amiens.

The teacher and her pupil had collaborated on the play The Art Of Comedy, by the Italian writer Eduardo De Filippo, every Friday night for months at the school, adapting it for all the students who wanted to take part.

As the audience clapped before the curtain came down, the teenager took a bow and kissed his teacher on each cheek as she smiled with obvious delight.

And a glimpse emerged of what was the start of a love affair between Macron and Brigitte.

Footage captures the moment a 15-year-old Emmanuel Macron (left) kissed his 40-year-old teacher Brigitte Trogneux (right) in 1993 – two years before he declared he wanted to marry her

Macron, the son of two respected local doctors, was adored by staff for his hard work and intelligence.

At the time, 39-year-old Brigitte was married to banker André-Louis Auzière, with whom she shares three children. 

The duo would work on the playscript late into the night. Neither had far to go home – the teacher to a house she shared nearby with her banker husband and children, while the pupil walked the short distance to his parents’ home in an affluent part of Amiens.

It was only when the play was finally staged, in front of proud parents and family, that a glimpse emerged of what was the start of a love affair between Macron and Brigitte.

‘Every Friday I went to write a play with her for several hours,’ the president of France later revealed. ‘We spoke about everything. And I discovered we had always known one another.’

As for Brigitte, whose eldest daughter Laurence was in the same class as Macron, she was captivated by his ‘exceptional intelligence’. She felt he was so gifted that it was as though ‘I was working with Mozart’.

The first sign other pupils had that the relationship was more than academic came during the play’s closing party at a local restaurant, with one contemporary watching as the pair shared what he described, cryptically, as a ‘tender moment’.

Their romance blossomed and caused a scandal in the province. Macron’s parents then sent him to Paris to attend another school, but his desire to be with his teacher and pursuit of her remained.

Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte during King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia’s visit to Paris, on 2 June 1015

Macron and Brigitte during the annual Bastille Day military parade on Place de la Concorde square in Paris on 13 July 2015

The couple arrive to attend a state dinner with French President Francois Hollande, Queen Maxima of the Netherlands and King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands at the Elysee Presidential Palace on 10 March 2016

The happy couple walk down the steps at The Sacré-Coeur in Paris on 4 Sep 2016

The duo pose prior to the 32nd annual dinner of the Jewish Institutions Representative Council in Paris on 22 February 2017

Emmanuel and his wife kiss to celebrate after the first round of the French presidential elections in Paris on 23 Apr 2017

The couple visit La Mongie mountain top for a lunch break in the Pyrenees before a meeting on 12 April 2017

Brigitte Trogneux and Emmanuel Macron pose at the Elysee Palace Emmanuel Macron Presidential Inauguration in Paris, France, on  14 May 2017

In an interview with Paris Match magazine, the 70-year-old said that she told herself once Macron was in Paris, he would ‘fall in love with someone his [own] age’, but that didn’t happen.

The First Lady continued to explain that she delayed marrying her husband for 10 years for the sake of her three children, who are around the same age as her younger partner.

Brigitte’s son is three years older than Macron and her daughters, now aged 46 and 39, are of similar age to her second husband. 

Brigitte finally wed Macron – a civil servant in his late twenties at the time – in Le Touquet on 20 October 2007, after divorcing her estranged husband André-Louis Auzière the year before.

Almost 24 years later, in 2017, the unlikely romance made global headlines when the couple celebrated victory in the first round of the French elections.

On a stage in Paris, Emmanuel Macron turned to thank his wife, who had given up teaching to help his campaign, and told her: ‘Always there, and what’s more, without whom I wouldn’t be me.’

After the speech, he and Brigitte headed for the historic La Rotonde restaurant, where they celebrated until the early hours.

First lady Brigitte Macron and French President Emmanuel Macron arrive for an official dinner at the Elysee Palace in Paris on 21 June 2017

Brigitte and her husband attend a State dinner at the Elysee Palace, Paris, on 19 March 2018 

The duo greet residents while walking along a beach in Le Touquet-Paris-Plage, France, on 23 April 2022

The pair arrive at the Presidential Palace in Vilnius, ahead of a social dinner hosted by on the first day of the 2023 NATO Summit, on 11 July 

French President Emmanuel Macron and Brigitte Macron at the Elysee Palace on the sidelines of the New Global Financial Pact Summit on 23 Jun 2023

The couple welcome Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for dinner at the Elysee Palace in Paris on 13 July 2023

Queen Camilla, King Charles III, Emmanuel Macron and Brigitte Macron King (L-R) Charles III and Queen Camilla attend State Banquet at the Palace of Versailles, Paris, France on 20 September 2023

Brigitte Macron and her husband French President Emmanuel Macron during the inauguration of the International French Language Centre at the Chateau de Villers Cotterets in Villers-Cotterets, France, on 30 October 2023

President Macron and his wife Brigitte arrive at the dinner in honour of the Heads of State and Government and leaders of international organisations participating in the 6th Paris Peace Forum, at the presidential Elysee Palace on 9 November 2023

Five years later, Brigitte joined her husband for his victory speech on 24 April 2022, having been predicted to beat his far-right rival and secure a second term as president. 

Discussing the age gap in their relationship, Brigitte told Elle France: ‘There are times in your life where you need to make vital choices. And for me, that was it. So, what has been said over the 20 years, it’s insignificant.

‘Of course, we have breakfast together, me and my wrinkles, him with his youth, but it’s like that.

‘If I did not make that choice, I would have missed out on my life. I had a lot of happiness with my children and, at the same time, felt I had to live this love as Prevert used to say, to be fully happy.’

Despite already being married for 16 years, Brigitte said her husband still manages to surprise and amaze her with his impressive memory and intelligence.

‘I had many brilliant pupils and none had his capability. I have always admired him,’ she explained.

The couple enjoy a quiet life together in the Élysée Palace once the president comes home around 10pm, with Brigitte cooking him breakfast and sometimes dinner.

While her husband spends the day concentrating on political matters, France’s First Lady teaches adult education for charity and focuses on good causes.

Brigitte and Macron do not have children of their own, but the French President is stepgrandfather to his wife’s seven grandchildren.

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