Re: For Beginners: What Do You Really Want in a Beginer's Worksh
Spend a bit of time on the right hand, as well: type/size of pick, "free wrist" vs. planted fingers, tremolo as well as fiddle-tune-linear picking. You could spend 30 seconds demo-ing cross-picking, as well.
A one-shot beginner workshop has to be a bit of a "survey," not one that'll inculcate real technique or repertoire. One very useful component is to emphasize the "equal fifths tuning," which, unlike guitar, means that a fairly limited number of finger patterns can be moved all over the fretboard to create a wide variety of chords. So you can learn a couple of two-, three-, or four-string chord fingerings, then move them up and down the neck, and from string course to string course, to achieve many chords.
One overall suggestion: if you have 50 minutes, don't attempt to cover two hours' worth of material. It takes a long time for a beginner to assimilate even a simple melody or a few chords. If you can, put your chord diagrams on a hand-out, so the participants have something to take away.
Oh, and spend a bit of time on tuning, which can be the biggest hurdle for a beginner to overcome. Seventh-fret unisons, and suggest purchase of an inexpensive electronic tuner.
Gibsn: '54 F5 3pt F2 A-N Custm K1 m'cello
Natl Triolian Dobro mando
Victoria b-back Merrill alumnm b-back
Stradolin Vega banjolin
Sobell'dola Washburn b-back'dola
Eastmn: 615'dola 805 m'cello
Flatiron 3K OM