Brigitte Trogneux will be France’s most unorthodox First Lady yet
Monday - 08/05/2017 04:55
BRIGITTE Trogneux raised plenty of eyebrows in the lead-up to France's presidential election - and she wasn't even one of the candidates.
As newly elected President Emmanuel Macron takes office, all eyes are also on his wife, Ms Trogneux. The incoming First Lady, 59, is 20 years older than her 39-year-old husband, and used to be his French and drama teacher before leaving their shared hometown of Amiens and following him to Paris.
The notoriously private couple have recently stepped into the spotlight as the former finance minister left the socialist party in order to form his own movement En Marche! which is translated as Onwards or On the Move.
Appealing to those disillusioned with both traditional candidates on the left and the right, Macron packed out rallies and quickly gained enough of a profile to make him the target of “fake news” articles, believed to be part of a Russian disinformation campaign to discredit him. Clearly, it that campaign didn't work.
During the campaign, the former investment banker laughed off unsubstantiated reports he was having a secret affair with a male French journalist, saying it must be his body double given his wife supports him 100 per cent.
“If you’re told I lead a double life ... it’s because my hologram has escaped,” he said.
The pair married in 2007, reportedly falling in love after meeting at a high school where she worked as his French and drama teacher.
Ms Trogneux is from a wealthy family of chocolatiers and has three children and six grandchildren. She told Paris Match magazine she was pursued by her husband from a young age.
“At the age of 17, Emmanuel said to me, ‘Whatever you do, I will marry you!’” she said as the couple posed on holiday at a nudist beach in France.
She has also heaped praise on her husband in another rare interview when asked what makes him good at politics.
“He is good at everything. Not just politics, you’re being quite restrictive …. I’m still yet to find an area where he isn’t good,” she said.
Life is about to change for the glamorous pair, who had previously stayed out of the spotlight. Mr Macron won today's presidential election with 65 per cent of the vote, easily beating right-wing firebrand Marine Le Pen.
France is no stranger to glamour and scandal in the Elysee Palace. President Francois Hollande began having an affair with actor Julie Gayet while dating Valerie Trierweiler. Former President Nicholas Sarkozy also married supermodel Carla Bruni while he was in office.