"Hope" versus "Expectation"
This is the difference between 'where we are', and 'where we want to be'.
Often times we are in the position of 'hoping things work out'. In terms of the marching arts, we hope we have a good run. We hope we do well at a competition. We hope we don't drop. We hope we don't crack our solo. We hope we play clean.
Ideally, we should expect to be great. We should expect to catch, perform and play clean.
The difference between "hope" and "expectation" is preparation. Those groups that just go out and always are consistently great? It's not from super human talent, or the world's best staff, or all the cool props.
It's because they arrive at rehearsal prepared. It's because they arrive at the show prepared. They don't arrive at rehearsal or the show 'hoping' that it all goes right. They show up expecting it to all go right because they've put in the work to make the jump from 'practicing until they get it right', to 'practicing until they can't get it wrong'.
So, if you feel yourself 'hoping' it all goes right, you have some work to do. Not in rehearsal, but at home, when you can take the time to analyze all the tiny little things that you can improve to realize the big gains in rehearsal.
We live in a time where we have a greater access to resources than ever before. Take videos, share them. Ask for feedback. Seek out those who have been there before. Don't be afraid of not being great. Embrace it. That discomfort and vulnerability, being able to publicly raise your hand and say 'I'm not great at this yet and need help' is one of the best life skills you can learn. Saying 'I don't know' is a much more valuable skill than pretending you do. Nobody was great at anything early on. They're great because they put in the work to go from 'hope' to 'expectation'.