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Mentorship is an essential part of passing the art forms down to the next generation. I was lucky to achieve the career of my dreams and find generous mentors along the way. My goal as a career coach is to share insight, invest my experience, and unlock doors that help young people to pursue their own dreams to the fullest-- whatever those dreams might be!

Industry Career Coaching

Now accepting a limited number of individual clients for private coaching in the Reno/Tahoe region.

Target Age Range: 14 - 23 

Currently working with high schoolers wanting to develop their current training and higher education pursuits, college students preparing to launch professional careers, and early career adults who need assistance with business navigation. 

Areas of coaching expertise:

Performers | dancers, actors, singers

Creatives | directors, choreographers

Industry | non-performance roles (management, casting) 

In-Person Only in greater Reno/Tahoe region

Offering virtual private coaching exclusively through Commerical Dance Intensive program at this time

All inquiries answered. See below for details.

Career Coaching for Young Performers

For decades Adam has helped young theater performers and dancers to identify pathways and strategize the pursuit of their dreams. Adam's range of industry experience has provided first hand knowledge of training programs, casting processes, and methods to achieve success in the theatrical and dance industries. As the author of the popular guidebook for young performers, The Business of Show, Adam has been invited to teach, guest lecture, and work one-on-one with teen and young adult students at a variety of top tier performing arts organizations and training programs across North America and Europe.


Students (and their parents) have benefitted from Adam's progressive-minded coaching process that includes: 

  • Demystifying post-high school education options 

  • Strategizing current training 

  • Creating industry-standard resumes, media content, & promotional materials 

  • Learning & applying best business practices 

  • Building tools for mental health & sustainability 

  • Procuring auditions & representation

  • Developing prepared audition or video submission performances 

  • Providing recommendations

  • Advising on the decision-making process 

  • Identifying resources

  • Opening doors to networking & opportunity

Adam is currently accepting a limited number of coaching clients, ages 14-23, who wish to pursue their theater and dance performing interests beyond their high school years. Coaching sessions are customized to the specific needs of the client - no two journeys are the same.


Read what past and current clients have to say...


Mavis Scully

Charlotte, NC

Adam’s diverse experience affords him incredible insight and wisdom into the ever- evolving labyrinth of show business with its multiple genres, pathways, and pitfalls. I trust him implicitly and seek his advice and opinions regularly. When it comes to next steps in my career, contract knowledge, acquiring and negotiating gigs, fleshing out workshop ideas, and making important connections, Adam is my go-to. He is truly invested and caring about my well-being and wants the best possible outcome for me - what a treasure.

Adam Cates is the dance career and college coach that will save you wasted time, stress and money. He is well researched and has had a longstanding career in the academic and performance worlds of dance. Adam helped make my daughter’s dreams come true and gave her the confidence to stand strong in her decision.

Christine Kaplan

Reno, NV


Alanna Tobin

Hometown: Merrimack, NH

Current City: Las Vegas, NV

Adam Cates guided me to achieve my career goals in so many ways. Today I am able to pursue my career as a professional dancer--without his advice and direction, I wouldn’t be where I am.

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