Dale Raoul, Maxine Fortenberry on HBO's hit vampire series 'True Blood,' is a veteran character actress who, for the past three decades, has worked in a myriad of stage, film, and television productions.
Dale began her professional acting career at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego appearing in 'Hamlet' and 'Taming of the Shrew.' She went on to perform in many regional theaters, including Indiana Repertory Theatre, Arizona Theatre Company, and the New Mexico Repertory Theatre. A native of the great state of Montana, Dale is proud to have played Josie Hogan in 'A Moon for the Misbegotten' for the inaugural production of the Montana Repertory Theatre, the state's first, and only, professional acting company. Shortly thereafter, she moved to California where she has cultivated her stage career at the Pasadena Playhouse, the Los Angeles Theatre Center, the Odyssey Theatre, and the Cast Theatre. Dale has received awards for various performances, including a Drama-Logue Award for her work in 'Steaming' at the Ivy Substation.
In 1986, Dale booked her first role on a television series, appearing in 'Murder She Wrote.' Earning a reputation as a formidable character actress, she has appeared on 'The Middle,' 'The Office,' 'Six Feet Under,' 'Friends,' 'NYPD Blue,' 'Seinfeld,' 'Mister Sterling,' 'The Drew Carey Show,' 'Sabrina the Teenage Witch,' 'Unhappily Ever After,' 'Nash Bridges,' 'Party Of Five,' 'Knots Landing,' 'Valerie,' 'Who's The Boss,' and 'L.A. Law,' culminating in her recurring role as the town busybody and vampire hater, Mama Maxine Fortenberry on 'True Blood.'
Dale has also starred in many made-for-television movies, including 'Mending Fences,' 'Net Force,' 'A Match Made in Heaven,' 'Death Benefit,' 'Favorite Deadly Sins,' and 'Here To Remember.'
She can be seen in numerous feature films, favorites being 'The Mexican,' 'Beautiful,' 'Seven Pounds,' 'Forfeit,' 'Save the Mavericks,' 'Love Stinks,' and 'Out To Sea' (in which she got to dance with Jack Lemmon and Donald O'Connor on a cruise ship in the Caribbean).
In 1986, Dale married Ray Thompson, an Emmy® award-winning lighting designer for CBS Television. They are supporters of the Los Angeles Opera and various animal shelters and adoption charities. Dale was active in the nonprofit organization Artists Confronting AIDS and has appeared in numerous charity fundraising events, including performing in Truman Capote's 'A Christmas Memory' to benefit Five Acres Orphanage and Caring for Babies with AIDS.
When not busy studying her lines, Dale and her husband happily relax with their two Bichon Frises (French for curly lap dog, which they are...) and Katie the Doggy of Unknown Lineage. They all live on a hill in Los Angeles.