She graduated from 'Komitas' High Academy in Yerevan first as a violinist, then as a singer. After her debut at the Armenian National Opera, she was invited as a soloist among others by Opera Bonn and Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Düsseldorf, Germany. Soon, she started an international career and has since appeared at numerous theaters, including the most prestigious operatic stages and concert houses in the world like The Metropolitan Opera and Carnegie Hall New York, San Francisco Opera, La Scala of Milan, Opéra Bastille in Paris, London Wigmore Hall, the Vienna State Opera, as well as the state operas of Munich, Stuttgart, Hamburg and Berlin.
Her repertoire ranges from Mozart's Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), Rossini's Mathilde (William Tell), Halévy's Rachel (La Juive) and Bizet's Micaëla (Carmen), passing by Puccini's Mimì (La Bohème), Magda (La Rondine), Tosca, Madama Butterfly and Boito's Margareta/ Elena (Mefistofele) to Tchaikovsky's Lisa (The Queen of Spades). It contains twelve Verdi-roles: La Traviata, Desdemona (Otello), Aida, Leonora (Il Trovatore and La forza del destino), Elisabetta (Don Carlo), Elena (I vespri siciliani), Amelia (Simon Boccanegra), Elvira (Ernani), Abigaille (Nabucco), Odabella (Attila) as well as the Requiem. A central part for her is Bellini's Norma; she has appeared in this role among others at Vienna Volksoper, at the Regio of Turin, in Montreal, Baltimore, Detroit, Denver and Washington DC, at Opéra de Marseille, at the festivals Chorégies d'Orange (South of France) and Luglio Trapanese (Sicily), in Mannheim, St. Gallen, Rotterdam and at De Nederlandse Opera Amsterdam. In 2003, the artist has starred in the title role of an opera movie of Bellini's Norma shot on locations in Armenia, directed by Boris Hayrapetian. In december 2005, the film has been shown in Moscow and Yerevan. A DVD-version is currently being prepared.
Hasmik Papian has appeared in most European countries, in Israel, Lebanon, Japan, Korea, Chile, Brazil as well as Canada and the United States where she is invited regularly. She is regularly present in Armenia (in recent years among others as Norma and Anoush on the operatic stage and with much acclaimed solo recitals, the last of which took place in July 2005 in the Aram Khachatrian Hall of the National Philharmony and was dedicated entirely to Komitas). Many of Ms. Papian's appearances have been related to the 24. April or fund raising for Armenian issues; throughout the last couple of years, appearances included such prestigious venus as London Wigmore Hall, Frankfurt Paulskirche or International House of Music in Moscow and cities all over the world like Washington, DC, Brussels, Munich and Beirut.
Hasmik Papian has performed with many notable conductors – such as Riccardo Muti, Valery Gergiev, Georges Prêtre, Michel Plasson, Marcello Viotti, Maurizio Arena, Myung-Whun Chung, Gennadi Roshdestvensky, Plácido Domingo, Leonard Slatkin and James Conlon. She has sung side by side with world famous singers such as Grace Bumbry, Fiorenza Cosotto, Placido Domingo, Roberto Alagna, Giacomo Aragall, Gegham Grigorian, Sheril Milnes, Nicolai Ghiaurov, Renato Bruson and José van Dam, to name just a few.
She is also very active promoting the music of fellow Armenian composers such as Komitas Vardapet, Yeranian, Kanatchian, Tchoukhadjian, Avet Terterian and Tigranian in her recitals. In 2004, she was honored with the title of the "People's Artist" of the Republic of Armenia. In 2005, she was awarded the Order of Saint Sahag-Saint Mashtots from the hands of Catholicos Garegin II of Armenia at the Holy Mother See of the Armenian Apostolic Church in Edchmiatsin, for her role as a "cultural ambassador of Armenia throughout the world". Hasmik Papian lives in Vienna, Austria.