PALM DESERT, Calif. -

Steve Martin and bluegrass band the Steep Canyon  Rangers will open the McCallum Theatre's 25th anniversary season tonight.
      The actor-comedian-banjo player has toured with the band for three  years, performing at such events as Bonnaroo, New Orleans' Jazzfest and the  Newport Folk Festival and winning the International Bluegrass Music  Association's 2011 "Entertainer of the Year" award.
      "Rare Bird Alert," released in 2011, features 13 tracks written by  Martin and guest vocals from Paul McCartney and the Dixie Chicks. The 2010  release, "The Crow/New Songs for the Five-String Banjo," won a Grammy for  best bluegrass album.
      Martin also won Grammys for his collaboration with Earl Scruggs on  "Foggy Mountain Breakdown" in 2001, and for his comedy albums "Wild and  Crazy Guy" in 1978 and "Let's Get Small" in 1977.
      Martin, who is also an author, playwright and producer, established the  Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass in 2010.
      The McCallum's upcoming season includes the Broadway musicals "Rock of  Ages," "Dreamgirls" and Disney's "Beauty and the Beast," as well as  performances by comedian Howie Mandel, opera singers Renee Fleming and Susan  Graham, violinist Itzhak Perlman and singers Smokey Robinson, Frank Sinatra  Jr,. Barbara Cook and Elaine Page.
      Tickets for Martin's 8 p.m. show are $125, $95, $75 and $65 and are  available by calling the McCallum box office at (760) 340-2787 or online at  www.mccallumtheatre.com.