Talent is important and plays a role in musical success, but in my opinion, work ethic plays a larger role. Without a consistent work ethic even the most talented student won’t succeed. There will be a place in the world of music for a student who has a “fire in the belly” and the work ethic to back it up.
I love the following quote by Tchaikosvsky:
We must always work, and a self-respecting artist must not fold his hands on the pretext that he is not in the mood. If we wait for the mood, without endeavouring to meet it half-way, we easily become indolent and apathetic. We must be patient, and believe that inspiration will come to those who can master their disinclination.
The quote is specifically about composition but could applied to any worthy endeavor. Read more in the full article.