Filmmaker Bio
Press Room


Praise for Patrick McGrady's WAGNER & ME

"! With an enthusiasm as genuine as it is infectious, actor Stephen Fry investigates his fondness for the imperial 19th-century opera of Richard Wagner. Fry details his enthusiasm for the composer’s technically and emotionally complex art with a fan’s passion and a scholar’s insight.  More impressive, however, is Fry’s candid confrontation of the profound disrepute bestowed on Wagner by Hitler’s affinity for his work. In honestly questioning whether his Wagner 'fanboyishness' is a betrayal of his Jewishness, Fry uses his film as a means not just of celebration but of thorny cultural-historical analysis."
-Nick Schager, Time Out Chicago

" Any time spent with the erudite actor/writer Stephen Fry is a pleasure, and therefore “Wagner & Me” flies by as if on wings." - Moira Macdonald, Seattle Times

"This sprightly doc considers one of the tougher questions of morality and aesthetics: What honor can good-hearted people afford to the achievements of perhaps the greatest artist of the 19th century when that great artist was a raging, anti-Semitic asshole—and, decades later, was adored by even worse assholes who exploited that artist's work to sell nothing less than the fantasy of the Third Reich?" -Alan Scherstuhl, The Village Voice

"'Wagner and Me' does what documentaries do best—it lets the subject speak for himself, and his music is powerfully moving. It informs and entertains...but what elevates the film above a standard “talking heads” doc, however, is the way in which it rekindles the spark some people feel for Wagner’s music, and, through the infectious enthusiasm of host Stephen Fry, might even light the flame for others unfamiliar with Wagner."
-Maryann Koopman Kelly, Paste Magazine

"Even if you don't share his views, you should find much to ponder and learn from in 'Wagner & Me.' The film reminds us how tightly intertwined are the artistic, political, social, philosophical and moral issues that surround the most controversial genius classical music has ever known." -John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune

"Captures astonishing interiors and Wagnerian mountainscapes, and opera lovers will relish the backstage tours and glimpses of recent productions, including a Bayreuth 'Parsifal' that directly addresses Nazism." -Ty Burr, Boston Globe

"I strongly recommend it...wrestles with musical and moral questions in a way that repays the viewer’s attention." -Michael Potemra, The National Review

"It gets to the heart of the debate about this 19th century German composer: Can you separate the man from the music? Should you?" -Nina Metz, Chicago Tribune

"There’s much here for newcomers to the world of 'The Ring' as well as 'Ringheads' alike. Fry wisely makes no claims for whether or how politics trumps art, or the other way around. In 90 minutes, he lets both his innocence and his deep but lightly worn knowledge give us a view of the complexities of human creation and what it means to be fascinated by such things." -Andrew Patner, Chicago Sun-Times

"Viewers who are Wagner fanatics will flock to see this doc, while those unfamiliar with his work may get some valuable musical education." -Tami Smith, Compuserve

"Smart and entertaining!" -Kevin Canfield, Filmmaker Magazine

"An affecting, personal film... Mesmerising!" - The Guardian

"Absorbing and elegantly produced…Infectious and genuinely serious."
- Sydney Morning Herald

"The questions he posed about art and politics, propaganda, power, myth and belonging and the sheer potency of expensive music were real and profound and touched the heart of all civilization." - The Sunday Times