Here is a list of some projects I have done, and publications in which I have appeared. Most of them have been done without charge for children’s charitable causes or at the request of friends in the media for special people or events. They can be viewed in the “Images” section.
- Art Smith’s Common Threads Charity Event in Chicago – March 17, 2008. I was requested by Art Smith, former chef to Oprah, writer, and owner of Table 52 restaurant, to make a S’mores castle. Paula Deen was the special guest. His organization helps teach children to cook and eat better. Art is truly one of the nicest people I have had the privilege to meet.
- Martha Stewart Halloween Show – October 4, 2007. I was requested to build Martha’s Gingerbread Spooky Mansion Kit, sold in leading stores, and to be creative in making my version of a Spooky Mansion. Martha Stewart describing my talents and my Gingerbread Spooky Mansion on her show: “Brenda Murphy is a Crafter Extraordinaire. Look at this elaborate creation. This is a really amazing creation.”
- “Starring You!” Published July 2007. I am featured in a book that interviews people who have come out of everyday backgrounds to appear on television, and tells how you can too. The foreword is by Paula Deen, and features such people as Diane Sawyer and Nancy Grace.
- The Mike and Juliet Morning Show 50th Episode – March 30, 2007. I made a cake with edible Mike & Juliet creations on the top, which Mike and a Sopranos guest proceeded to eat on-air.
- Premier of The Mike and Juliet Morning Show on Fox – January 26, 2007. I made special logo and portrait cupcakes for their premier show. It turned out that Mike is a cupcake addict!
- The View on ABC – Barbara Walters Birthday Show – September 25, 2006. I was requested to create a special birthday cake for an on-air birthday surprise. I was the one surprised when Barbara included me in the picture taken by the PR people.
- Euan Morton, Tony nominated singer’s “New Clear” CD – April, 2006 at Joe’s Pub. I created a chocolate CD replica, a cake and cupcakes with an edible logo image. It was presented at the launching party for the Euan’s NewClear CD – which is very good by the way!
- Martha Stewart 100th Show – February 13, 2006. I made cupcakes with the show’s logo on them. Martha and Rosie discussed the creations, with Rosie joking and “crying” that I used to be on her show, and now I am on Martha’s instead.
- The WB network Life & Style Show – May 2005. I created a candy replica of the studio using M&M’s, when it became their official candy. The four ladies who hosted the show were a fun and enjoyable group.
- Fanny Hill – I was asked to make a special cake and cupcakes for the opening night after-party.
- Rosie’s Broadway Kids Benefit – Featured Rosie’s Broadway Belters on April 11, 2005 at the Zipper Theatre. I created the special logo candy cups which were included in the gifts bags. These deserving and talented kids put on a wonderful show!
- Tony Danza’s Show 100th episode - February 11, 2005. I created a special cake featuring edible pictures of guests, including Liza Minnelli and James Denton who rolled the cake out for the ending celebration. It was a thrill meeting James and Liza, who were both very nice.
- “Candy Creations from the Candy Queen” - Mondo Publishing, 2004. I am the subject of a book used in schools to encourage children to read biographies. There is also a kid’s “Half Pint Castle” project in the book.
- I am featured as the “Candy Queen” character in several Winged Tiger, Dinosaurs Across America and Patrick Rabbit non-violent comic books, including the first English & Spanish bilingual comic. It is an honor to be in Phil Yeh’s publications; he is one of the most talented and caring human beings I have had the privilege to work with.
- Laura Bush’s National Book Festival – Wash. D.C. – 2004. I was invited to display a large poster of my candy White House, sharing a booth with Phil Yeh of Cartoonists Across America, who promotes children’s literacy and creativity all over the world. He has been honored at the White House for his work promoting literacy, and his work has even been featured on a European postage stamp!
- Dena Hammerstein’s “Only Make Believe” - November 2004. This is a New York City charity for chronically ill children. I made very special candy for the gifts bags for these very special kids. The following year I created a cake for their 5th anniversary, and to honor Kathie Lee Gifford for her considerable work on behalf of children.
- Kathie Lee Gifford’s play “Under the Bridge” - November 2004. I made a candy replica of the stage and actors for the premier. I also made the candy treats for the gift bags and a special picture cake for the final night after-party.
- Steve Colbert – The Colbert Report. I was requested to make a chocolate picture frame and stand with an edible image of him for his office. I also threw in some special portrait cupcakes. Contrary to his on-screen persona, he is a sweet and thoughtful person.
- “Taboo”, Rosie O’Donnell’s Broadway play - November 2003. I created a candy replica of the Plymouth Theatre and candy favors for gift bags for “Rosie’s Broadway Kids” benefit. A special cake was also created for Taboo’s closing night party.
- ICES convention in Las Vegas - August 2003. It was an honor to be requested to be a featured speaker and demonstrator on how to make candy creations for this leading international cake decorating organization.
- The Wayne Brady Show - May 2003. I was requested to make and present Wayne with a candy Emmy award in Hollywood, for the “Sweetest Talk Show Host”. I was fortunate to attend the real Emmy awards, which he won. Wayne is truly one of the warmest and caring celebrities I have met, and he is loved by all who work with him.
- The Caroline Rhea Show – 2002. I made a candy haunted house for this ABC show. Caroline is a very talented and funny lady. She always took time with each member of the audience that wanted a picture or autograph.
- The Food Network “Lighten Up with Janette and Christina” – 2002. I made my special marshmallow and peanut butter cups with the show’s logo. Both of the hosts are very nice people, and I am lucky to have been able to get to know them both as friends.
- Rosie O'Donnell Show final week episode - May, 2002. I made the six-tiered farewell cake, which featured edible pictures of the guests for each of the show's six seasons. Rosie was so overwhelmed by it, that she spontaneously gave me and my husband a vacation in Hawaii!
- Joey Kola Candy Bed – September 11, 2001. Joey is known as possibly the best studio warm-up comedian in the business. He was Rosie’s warm-up guy, and later Martha’s. When he broke his leg, I created a miniature bed made from his favorite candies, Kit Kat and Chunky. Joey is a very sweet friend!
- International Chocolate Show NYC - November 16, 2001. I was invited to display my Times Square animated candy creation at this prestigious chocolate event, and was featured on their poster the following year. This was my first “international” exposure, when I was interviewed by Japanese television and newspaper.
- Rosie O'Donnell’s 1000th Show – May 2001. I was genuinely surprised to be among a few past guests invited to the taping of Rosie's 1000th show, and my birthday card was featured in the flash-back of past shows. It was fun to participate in the closing celebration.
- International Tennis Hall of Fame - September 8, 2000. I was asked to make a candy replica of the Hall, for the induction of Martina Navratilova at the Waldorf-Astoria in NYC. The replica was auctioned off for a tennis camp charity for deserving kids, and raised thousands of dollars.
- The Contemporary Hotel at Disney World, Orlando, Florida – I was commissioned to do an abstract mosaic of Mickey Mouse, made of M&M's! It is made in three pieces, each 36" by 20"and hangs in the hotel candy and gift shop. Disney World is one of my favorite places, so it was humbling and a “fantasy” to have my creation on display there. This is the kind of thing that happens to other people, not me!
- New Jersey Savvy Living – Winter/Holiday 1999, By Bill Glovin. I was featured in the magazine, relating my story about how I was on television on Rosie’s show and winning the national Nabisco Contest
- Bryant Gumbel, the CBS Early Show - December 31, 1999. The CBS 2000 Millennium show featured my chocolate replica of Times Square that had a lit sugar crystal ball with a timed drop, candy confetti that shot out, a cup of soup with steam, two TV screens counting down, and candy taxis that drove around the building. I planned it for a year, and this was my most complicated and animated creation. Bryant turned out to be a very warm and nice person, well liked by the staff.
- Good Housekeeping Magazine – October 1999. I was featured under “Profiles” as the "Candy Queen", telling the remarkable story of how my candy creations gained national media attention. I often find it hard to believe myself! The “Candy Queen” title stuck with me.
- NBC Later Today Show - October 29, 1999. I was a featured guest on the show, where I demonstrated to Florence Henderson how to make a candy haunted house out of store-bought candy. The entire cast was a pleasure to work with.
- Rosie's Chub Club 5K Charity Run Show - May 21, 1999. On my fourth Rosie O'Donnell Show appearance I made a miniature Central Park scene out of candy. It featured candy runners that actually "ran" around a track. I was also the "celebrity" guest in Rosie's tent for the event. It was fun to be a “celebrity for a day!
- Rosie O’Donnell’s Birthday Show - March 19, 1999. I was a guest and presented Rosie with a giant birthday card with sound. Rosie's portrait was done as the Queen of Hearts using M&M's. This episode was one of the flash-backs featured on Rosie's 1000th show.
- Nabisco's 100th Anniversary Edible Architecture Contest. – 1998. Shortly after my first television appearance on Rosie’s show, I won the national grand prize of $10,000 for making a winning cottage with a parade, using over 30 snack and candy products. Rosie featured me and the winning entry on her show for the second time, December 1998.
- I was first featured on the Rosie O’Donnell Show in May 1998, when I made an edible model of Rosie's TV studio set out of candy, complete with sound and faces of Rosie and the guests painted on M&M's! Rosie gave me my first big break, and I am grateful. Only later did I come to learn of the considerable work she does on behalf of kid’s causes.
- M&M/Mars "Santa's Candy House" - In 1996 and 1997 I created, designed, and helped develop the kit to make the house. In 1997 a “Christmas Tree” kit was added. It was successfully sold nationwide. I helped design a cookie cutter, and my cookie recipes are featured on packages of M&M's.
- Rolls-Royce - I created a Rolls-Royce entirely out of candy for their Holiday party centerpiece and raffle prize. It featured a 1/4 inch Flying Lady hood ornament and a honking horn!
- Hershey's Greatest Cocoa Cake Contest – This was probably the first food contest I ever entered. No one was more surprised than me when I won first prize, and placed second in consecutive years. Around the same time, I was encouraged by friends to enter the Oklahoma State fair. Again I was in disbelief, winning two of the coveted State Fair gold medals, Best of Show and several first place prizes in various food and decorating categories.