between an amateur and a professional?
That was a recurrent theme during T-'s last studio class.
An amateur practices until he gets it right.
A professional practices until she can't get it wrong.
It occurs to me that playing in an amateur orchestra fosters an amateur mindset towards preparing music.
A major benefit of playing in an orchestra is that the music stretches you, and can be an impetus for adding technical principal, fast. But the risk to this is that the requirements are often beyond what your "technique bank" can afford. Sometimes you can be seriously overdrawn. So you prepare as best you can, figure out the best way to "fake" it, actively engage your imagination to hear the music the way you want it to sound, even though it doesn't. Practice until you get it "right enough," then move on to the next challenge.
Some of my current angst over how I am playing is a side effect of having my ears opened to the sound I am actually producing. It's painful in my lessons, but so worthwhile. At least, I think it is. Might it be better to remain ignorant, enjoying my imaginary music? Sometimes, while I am practicing the orchestra music that is still beyond me, I wonder.