For several weeks Piatigorsky continued the ruse, even taking a perverse pleasure in playing as badly as he pleased, and eventually attended the young man's graduation. He performed brilliantly. As Piatigorsky made his way through the crowd of well-wishers to offer his congratulations, he was amused to overhear someone ask the new graduate what he thought of the great cellist. "As a teacher he is excellent," the young man replied. "But as a cellist, lousy!"