So at her next lesson, this student (a pianist, a teacher, a choir director) played her piece, and when she finished, she volunteered that she had tried to observe dynamics, articulation and fingering. After a moment's silence, I asked "What was your musical intention in playing this piece?" She looked puzzled for just a moment and then said "Oh my, I wait until I have done everything else."
Unfortunately, this is the usual response. Why do we wait until we have done everything else "correctly" before we think about the music and what we wish to communicate through this piece. It seems to be the way of many students of music.
Why do we not make the musical soul of the piece our first priority?
For me, how we learn, whether it be to play an instrument, become a dancer or write a book, is a reflection of how we do life. How do you learn? Think about it.