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Ramapo College’s Berrie Center to Host Combat Hippies in “Amal”

(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)October 25, 2021

Photo credit: Romain Maurice

MAHWAH, N.J. –In celebration of Puerto Rican Heritage Month and Veterans and Military Families Month, the Berrie Center for the Arts at Ramapo College of New Jersey welcomes the Combat Hippies in a production of “Amal” on Tuesday, November 16 at 8 p.m.  “Amal” explores the search for meaning, purpose, and identity through enlisting in the military, as well as Puerto Rico’s cultural and military history. This powerful performance delves into the impact of war on both combatants and noncombatants as people of color, and shares experiences of veteran’s adjustment to life after war.

“Amal” is intended for mature audiences only. Audiences are cautioned the production uses strobe lights and there is a gunshot blast.  For more information or to purchase tickets, patrons can go to the Berrie Center website at

Led by renowned theater artist and director Teo Castellanos, Combat Hippies is an ensemble of Puerto Rican military veteran performing artists based in Miami, Florida. They formed during a creative writing workshop for veterans in 2015 and have since developed multiple evenings of spoken word and music, generative approaches to workshops designed toward healing, community engagement offerings and more. The company focuses on works about combatants as people of color, and shares experiences of veteran’s adjustments to life after war as well as that of civilians from war-torn countries. Their work also explores the search for meaning, purpose, and identity through enlisting in the military, as well as Puerto Rico’s cultural and military heritage.

This engagement of “Amal” is funded in part by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Theater Project, with lead funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.


Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice; is recognized as the state’s top college on the list of Best Disability Schools by Great Value Colleges; was named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler; and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World ReportKiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a post-master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice.


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