If it were a hotel, Theatre in the Park‘s pixilated production of Tim Clue and Spike Manton’s family-vacation comedy, “Leaving Iowa,” would easily earn the American Automobile Association’s coveted five-diamond rating. Under the sure-handed direction of TIP’s founder, executive and artistic director, and resident zany Ira David Wood III, “Leaving Iowa” nimbly navigates its way through a comic minefield, and gins up gales of laughter in the process — to mix metaphors.
“‘Leaving Iowa’ … is the story of Don Browning, a middle-aged writer, who returns home and decides to finally take his father’s ashes to his childhood home, as requested,” says director David Wood. “But when Don discovers Grandma’s house is now a grocery store, he begins traveling across Iowa searching for a proper resting place. This road trip shifts smoothly from the present to Don’s memories of the annual, torturous vacations of his childhood. Don’s existential journey finally leads him to reconcile his past and present at the center of the United States.