MIDI controller pioneer Mario DeCiutiis has announced his retirement from the Alternate Mode business he founded.
In a letter to customers, DeCiutiis recalls starting working with KAT Inc back in 1985. “In 1996, I took over manufacturing of the KAT controllers and started Alternate Mode with my wife, Connie. Now at age 72, I’ve come to the decision that it’s time for someone young, ambitious and competent to take over the company,” he writes.
DeCiutiis has named his nephew, Bryan Hughes, as his successor as president and CEO of Alternate Mode.
“All of the folks at Alternate Mode, except Connie, will remain working at our new factory. We really are a family-orientated company and will remain that way,” he explains, adding that he will stay on as a consultant to the company.
“We are in the middle of some really exciting new products, and it’s really important to me to see these new products come to completion,” he adds.
As for the future, DeCiutiis says he is looking forward to “having the time to find my full potential as a malletKAT player”.
He plans on making hundreds of videos for AM, he says, adding: “It’s time for me to start having fun being a retired musician.”
The new owner, Hughes, meanwhile, says he is honoured and humbled to be picking up the torch at Alternate Mode. “Having grown up watching the development of this company, I am thrilled at the opportunity to be a part of what I believe is a very special culture of musicians.
“Mario has always prioritised quality and playability over anything else and my primary goal is to continue that tradition.
“Alternate Mode already has a long rich heritage behind it, but in many ways, I feel like we are only at the beginning of what we can do together,” he says.
DeCiutiis, a digitalDrummer Hall of Famer, was profiled in the February 2014 edition of digitalDrummer.