As a boy, Emmanuel Macron was preternaturally smart, self-assured and seemed to prefer spending time with adults instead of kids his own age. These traits underscored his most significant relationships and helped propel him to the presidency.
His arms outstretched, fingers clenched, his boyish face basking in the spotlight, a young Macron lets out a dramatic sigh, prolonging every second of undiluted audience attention before launching into his lines.
The video clip of a 15-year-old Macron performing in a school play may have grainy visuals and scratchy sound. But the home movie is a harbinger of the phenomenon to come, like watching the making of a storm of sorts that would one day strike France with suddenspeed and intensity.
In many ways, that May 1993 production of Jean Tardieu’s “La comédie du langage” (The Language of Comedy) marked the public start of what was to become the Macron phenomenon.