NEWS

Madonna Celebrates the French Election Results by Making a Point About Ageism

She thinks we should all be more like the French when it comes to this.


Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images

Madonna is not exactly known for being shy about voicing her opinions, and she didn’t hold back on the occasion of the French presidential election. While she seems to be just as happy as anyone that a party fueled by isolationism and xenophobia was handed the loss, she also took the opportunity to make a point about an issue dear to her heart: ageism. Particularly ageism in public relationships.

As election results Sunday showed that centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron swiftly defeated his far right opponent Marine Le Pen, Madonna posted two celebratory videos to Instagram of her children and their friends jumping for joy on a trampoline and dancing in the kitchen. Madge wrote alongside the clips, “so happy about elections in France!!” and “Vive La France!!”

Then, on Monday, Madonna posted a photo of the victor himself, Macron, and his wife Brigitte. The pop icon congratulated the French president-elect, who at 39 will be the Fifth Republic’s youngest leader, and his first lady, who is 64, while also making a relevant point about ageism.

“Congrats to Emmanuel and Brigitte Macron.” she wrote. “Fun Fact for Monday is that the first Lady of France is 24 yrs older than her husband and no one in France seems to care about their age difference nor insisted that Brigitte ‘Act her Age’ …Vive La France!”

In January, Madonna told Harper’s Bazaar that she herself refuses to conform to society’s ideals of how a woman her age should act when it comes to relationships. “I refuse to live a conventional life,” she said. “I’ve created a very unconventional family. I have lovers who are three decades younger than me. This makes people very uncomfortable. I feel like everything I do makes people feel really uncomfortable.”

And the singer recently opened up about how she’s been personally affected by ageism and sexism as a woman in the entertainment industry in her acceptance speech for Billboard‘s Woman of the Year award.

“If you’re a girl, you have to play the game,” she said of female musicians in her speech. “You’re allowed to be pretty and cute and sexy. But don’t act too smart. Don’t have an opinion that’s out of line with the status quo. You are allowed to be objectified by men and dress like a slut, but don’t own your sluttiness. And do not, I repeat do not, share your own sexual fantasies with the world. Be what men want you to be, but more importantly, be what women feel comfortable with you being around other men. And finally, do not age. Because to age is a sin. You will be criticized and vilified and definitely not played on the radio.”

It’s no surprise then that the queen of pop has the new first lady of France’s back.

Related: Even Madonna Can’t Keep Up With Everything Madonna’s Done

Brigitte Macron, Carla Bruni, and More: A Brief History of France’s First Ladies and Their Front-Row Affair with Fashion

First lady from 1969 until her husband’s death in 1974, Claude Pompidou—née Cahour—was instrumental in founding the Centre Georges Pompidou, the contemporary art museum in her husband’s name. A noted patron of the arts and avid fashion lover, she was also frequently spotted in the front row of shows like Chanel (pictured here, Spring 1979, with Bernadette Chirac, wife of then-Paris major Jacques Chirac) and palling around with designer Karl Lagerfeld.

PIERRE GUILLAUD/Getty Images

In addition to her public support of the arts and fashion, Pompidou also experimented with her own looks, favoring ensembles by the likes of avant-garde designer Courrèges and Pierre Cardin and opting for then-scandalous pantsuits.

Keystone-France/Getty Images

In addition to her devotion to fashion, Pompidou was also an art aficionado. She redecorated the Élysée Palace with contemporary, of-the-moment pieces; she and her husband regularly visited local galleries; and, a fan of the artist Yves Klein, she was also instrumental in negotiating the look of the Centre Georges Pompidou, which opened after her husband’s death.

J. Cuinieres/Getty Images

Pompidou and Chirac, who would eventually become first lady herself, were frequently spotted at Chanel shows together—as here, at Fall 1985—up until Pompidou’s death in 2007.

PIERRE GUILLAUD/Getty Images

Following Pompidou, Anne-Aymone Giscard D’Estaing, wife of president Valéry Giscard D’Estaing (1974-1981) picked up the mantle of fashion’s first lady. Though never as much of an insider as her predecessor—and far less the art fan, as she and her husband dismantled much of the Élysée Palace’s contemporary décor—she nevertheless frequented Givenchy shows. Here, she’s pictured with the designer Hubert de Givenchy himself, September 1997.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

Though designer Jean-Louis Scherrer’s label has since closed up shop, it was a favorite of French politicians throughout the late 20th century; here, Giscard D’Estaing poses with the designer and his daughter, November 2005.

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

President from 1981 to 1995, François Mitterrand was the longest-serving president in French history. His wife, Danielle Mitterrand, focused primarily on human rights issues, pushing the role of first lady beyond its traditionally domestic bounds—yet she was no less chic for it, befriending designers like Yves Saint Laurent, pictured here in 1992.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

Each first lady seems to have favored a particular French fashion legend—and for Mitterrand, that legend was Yves Saint Laurent. Here, she sits front-row at the label’s Spring 1986 couture show.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff

And while for Mitterrand, fashion week was less of a pressing concern than for predecessors like Claude Pompidou, she still frequently attended the most exclusive shows. Here, she embraces Pierre Bergé, business and romantic partner of Yves Saint Laurent, before the label’s Fall 1992 show.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

After cutting her teeth in the front row as the first lady of Paris (her husband Jacques was the mayor for nearly 20 years, from 1977 to 1995), Bernadette Chirac ascended to first lady of France when Jacques was elected president in 1995. He was succeeded by Nicolas Sarkozy in 2007. From Dior to Chanel to Yves Saint Laurent, Chirac took in everything, with friend Claude Pompidou by her side. Here, Chirac is pictured with designer Yves Saint Laurent at the designer’s Musée des Arts de la Mode restrospective in Paris, May 1986.

MICHEL GANGNE/Getty Images

As recently as Spring 2013, Chirac has been spotted in the front row, still posing with designer Karl Lagerfeld as if it’s 1985 all over again.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

Cécilia Sarkozy married French president Nicolas Sarkozy in 1996; they divorced, causing quite the scandal in France, in 2007. (Sarkozy remarried, to the supermodel and singer Carla Bruni, the following year.) But despite her short reign as France’s first lady, Sarkozy nevertheless found a place in fashion; here, she’s front row with the late designer Sonia Rykiel at the Yves Saint Laurent Fall 1993 show.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff

After divorcing Cécilia, Nicolas Sarkozy remarried, wedding Carla Bruni, the French-Italian supermodel and singer who had walked many of the same runways at which she’d later sit front row. Here, she walks Chanel Spring 1989 during Paris Fashion Week, October 1988. (She didn’t marry Sarkozy until 2008.)

Victor VIRGILE/Getty Images

Bruni’s eye for fashion was among the most remarked of recent first ladies; arriving in London for a state dinner, she wore a Dior ensemble complete with a pillbox hat that, at the time, many noted for looking like a contemporary update on the Jackie Kennedy image of a first lady.

Olivier SANCHEZ/Getty Images

And, of course, the selfies—here, with Karlie Kloss, September 2016.

Victor Boyko

Though she never married president François Hollande, who presided over France from 2012 to 2017, Valérie Trierweiler nevertheless took up the front-row place of honor occupied by most first ladies. Here, she appears with designer Raf Simons, then of Dior, at the Dior Spring 2014 show.

Rindoff/Dufour/Getty Images

Trierweiler and Hollande split in early 2014; later that year, she was nevertheless spotted at all the major shows, including Dior’s Fall 2014 couture show, here, where she sat alongside the Arnaults and actress Isabelle Huppert.

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Incoming first lady Brigitte Trogneux, wife of president-elect Emmanuel Macron, already has the requisite front-row credibility befitting a first lady. Here, she sits front-row at Dior’s Fall 2015 couture show.

Rindoff/Le Segretain

Trogneux is nearly 30 years Macron’s elder; as has been amply reported, she was a teacher at his high school and advised him on a play when he was a young drama student. They married in 2007; she’s still a teacher, albeit one who also lands coveted spots at fashion week—here, alongside actress Léa Seydoux at the Louis Vuitton Fall 2016 show.

Rindoff/Le Segretain/Getty Images
1/19

See What’s Tending in W Video:

Brigitte Macron, Carla Bruni, and More: A Brief History of France’s First Ladies and Their Front-Row Affair with Fashion

First lady from 1969 until her husband’s death in 1974, Claude Pompidou—née Cahour—was instrumental in founding the Centre Georges Pompidou, the contemporary art museum in her husband’s name. A noted patron of the arts and avid fashion lover, she was also frequently spotted in the front row of shows like Chanel (pictured here, Spring 1979, with Bernadette Chirac, wife of then-Paris major Jacques Chirac) and palling around with designer Karl Lagerfeld.

PIERRE GUILLAUD/Getty Images

In addition to her public support of the arts and fashion, Pompidou also experimented with her own looks, favoring ensembles by the likes of avant-garde designer Courrèges and Pierre Cardin and opting for then-scandalous pantsuits.

Keystone-France/Getty Images

In addition to her devotion to fashion, Pompidou was also an art aficionado. She redecorated the Élysée Palace with contemporary, of-the-moment pieces; she and her husband regularly visited local galleries; and, a fan of the artist Yves Klein, she was also instrumental in negotiating the look of the Centre Georges Pompidou, which opened after her husband’s death.

J. Cuinieres/Getty Images

Pompidou and Chirac, who would eventually become first lady herself, were frequently spotted at Chanel shows together—as here, at Fall 1985—up until Pompidou’s death in 2007.

PIERRE GUILLAUD/Getty Images

Following Pompidou, Anne-Aymone Giscard D’Estaing, wife of president Valéry Giscard D’Estaing (1974-1981) picked up the mantle of fashion’s first lady. Though never as much of an insider as her predecessor—and far less the art fan, as she and her husband dismantled much of the Élysée Palace’s contemporary décor—she nevertheless frequented Givenchy shows. Here, she’s pictured with the designer Hubert de Givenchy himself, September 1997.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

Though designer Jean-Louis Scherrer’s label has since closed up shop, it was a favorite of French politicians throughout the late 20th century; here, Giscard D’Estaing poses with the designer and his daughter, November 2005.

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

President from 1981 to 1995, François Mitterrand was the longest-serving president in French history. His wife, Danielle Mitterrand, focused primarily on human rights issues, pushing the role of first lady beyond its traditionally domestic bounds—yet she was no less chic for it, befriending designers like Yves Saint Laurent, pictured here in 1992.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

Each first lady seems to have favored a particular French fashion legend—and for Mitterrand, that legend was Yves Saint Laurent. Here, she sits front-row at the label’s Spring 1986 couture show.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff

And while for Mitterrand, fashion week was less of a pressing concern than for predecessors like Claude Pompidou, she still frequently attended the most exclusive shows. Here, she embraces Pierre Bergé, business and romantic partner of Yves Saint Laurent, before the label’s Fall 1992 show.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

After cutting her teeth in the front row as the first lady of Paris (her husband Jacques was the mayor for nearly 20 years, from 1977 to 1995), Bernadette Chirac ascended to first lady of France when Jacques was elected president in 1995. He was succeeded by Nicolas Sarkozy in 2007. From Dior to Chanel to Yves Saint Laurent, Chirac took in everything, with friend Claude Pompidou by her side. Here, Chirac is pictured with designer Yves Saint Laurent at the designer’s Musée des Arts de la Mode restrospective in Paris, May 1986.

MICHEL GANGNE/Getty Images

As recently as Spring 2013, Chirac has been spotted in the front row, still posing with designer Karl Lagerfeld as if it’s 1985 all over again.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

Cécilia Sarkozy married French president Nicolas Sarkozy in 1996; they divorced, causing quite the scandal in France, in 2007. (Sarkozy remarried, to the supermodel and singer Carla Bruni, the following year.) But despite her short reign as France’s first lady, Sarkozy nevertheless found a place in fashion; here, she’s front row with the late designer Sonia Rykiel at the Yves Saint Laurent Fall 1993 show.

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff

After divorcing Cécilia, Nicolas Sarkozy remarried, wedding Carla Bruni, the French-Italian supermodel and singer who had walked many of the same runways at which she’d later sit front row. Here, she walks Chanel Spring 1989 during Paris Fashion Week, October 1988. (She didn’t marry Sarkozy until 2008.)

Victor VIRGILE/Getty Images

Bruni’s eye for fashion was among the most remarked of recent first ladies; arriving in London for a state dinner, she wore a Dior ensemble complete with a pillbox hat that, at the time, many noted for looking like a contemporary update on the Jackie Kennedy image of a first lady.

Olivier SANCHEZ/Getty Images

And, of course, the selfies—here, with Karlie Kloss, September 2016.

Victor Boyko

Though she never married president François Hollande, who presided over France from 2012 to 2017, Valérie Trierweiler nevertheless took up the front-row place of honor occupied by most first ladies. Here, she appears with designer Raf Simons, then of Dior, at the Dior Spring 2014 show.

Rindoff/Dufour/Getty Images

Trierweiler and Hollande split in early 2014; later that year, she was nevertheless spotted at all the major shows, including Dior’s Fall 2014 couture show, here, where she sat alongside the Arnaults and actress Isabelle Huppert.

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Incoming first lady Brigitte Trogneux, wife of president-elect Emmanuel Macron, already has the requisite front-row credibility befitting a first lady. Here, she sits front-row at Dior’s Fall 2015 couture show.

Rindoff/Le Segretain

Trogneux is nearly 30 years Macron’s elder; as has been amply reported, she was a teacher at his high school and advised him on a play when he was a young drama student. They married in 2007; she’s still a teacher, albeit one who also lands coveted spots at fashion week—here, alongside actress Léa Seydoux at the Louis Vuitton Fall 2016 show.

Rindoff/Le Segretain/Getty Images
1/19